I still have to try desparately (and most times unsuccessfully) to not get discouraged that a year + later I am still so easily overstimulated or emotional, physically and mentally drained. Any kind of socializing takes a massive toll, so I can only do it for a few hours at a time tops without having to decompress for hours or even days. Riding in a car for around a half hour is akin to how taxed I used to feel after working on an essay or taking a stressful exam, not enough to drain you for the day entirely but definitely noticeable. And this is just riding along, I can't even imagine driving again yet.
I have to gear myself up for any prolonged interactions paying careful attention to my stores of energy. I'm twenty fucking eight and now have the social life of a 92 year old shut in because anything more blurs into major meltdown territory and I can't fathom subjecting my already put out loved ones to any more. One on one mellow time is absolute heaven though, a movie day or low key games just hanging out with one other soul that I am already comfortable with seems to be the perfect balance of social and stimulation boundaries where I'm not alone, possibly lonely and in my own head; but I am also not intrusively barraged on each imaginable level until my control or mask slips and I either ask to prematurely "call it a day" or have what is now coming to be a hideously characteristic flood of tears and what I've come to liken to a valve pressure release breaking down for 15-20 mins and then regrouping. Not only what I consider socially un fuckin acceptable but completely embarrassing and unfair to ask my companions to handle EVERYTIME they feel like having me be part of the group.
I don't know how to work on this, start to control it or anything, all I do know is that this is completely uncharted territory for me and exactly the opposite of who I used to (socially) be. Goddamnit. I can find blessing in this journey or chapter as a whole but am finding difficulty cultivating an appreciation for this particular aspect. Fuck.