AutisticFit is the creative result from a life experienced by Amber Black, a pro fitness athlete from Houston Texas. Amber is now candidly speaking about the ups and downs of living life on the spectrum, being diagnosis late in life at 37 years of age, early years of life trying to fit in and keep up with external neurotypical expectations, being bullied for her differences, ridiculed, and overcoming 15 surgeries, rebuilding her life hasnt been easy. The will to overcome, learn about her differences, and accept them kept her driven to overcome adversity and challenges and learn from them. At 46, Amber is stepping back into competing and sharing transparent glimpses about her life and what tools and mindset processes have played a role in her life that have helped her navigate life before her Dx with autism and PTSD, and after it dealing with the trauma and to continue to heal her life and thrive.
Her story sheds light on her life “on living with autism” , and the signs that were all there before age 5, choosing fitness as an active intention to inspire, educate, and empower others. Offering a personal look into the life of Amber’s journey from an honest place to support path of others and that of her own in celebration of how fitness helps manage the isolation, anxiety, sensory sensitivity, and unique challenges that those with Autism face with a sense of support, care and courage. Ambers’ goals are to help encourage improving health, environment, confidence, and sense of wellbeing with a mindset that is disciplined and tenacious! A way of living that cultivates and moves others into a position to rise above the adversity of life circumstances through the application of focus and hard work, healthy boundaries, self-awareness, consistency, and patience.
Life comes with many lessons and many teachers, Amber overcame an infection that left a hole in her chest for 3 months causing permanent muscle damage and nerve damage to her left side. Her recovery journey included 9 surgeries after the initial cause to restore her structure over a 7 year period and other subsequent physical, neurological and neurobiological damages that changed the course of her life forever… After a prolonged reconstructive surgery in 2009 Amber’s neurological condition seemed to change again in ways that caused her body to go through a number of different exhibitions that were unexplainable. It wasnt until her endocrinologist said, Amber, tell me about your life, that answers started unfolding. As her doctor listened to what Amber said, it became apparent to her that Amber’s was shutting down organ systems do to the overload from surgical and abusive trauma of the events she encountered. For the next years Amber was determined to get answers and heal her life. The lessons Amber went through taught her to care for herself and to see the truth about what that relationship needed to be. She didn’t do this on her own.
She searched for answers and guidance that could help her heal from the life that was occurring around her and the life she sought to live. Diligently developing skills to understand reality around autism after her diagnosis, to see it as neutral and not good or bad, and as a system to support her and the demand of her healing needs, to help her feel energetic, safe, to recover and to enjoy with the best educators and environments. The diagnosis served to give a reference for a place to work from to regain life again one day at a time. She removed those who didnt cultivate a nurturing and stable foundation to help her restore and focused on the positives and solutions that encompassed safety and allowance to heal in a peaceful space. She worked hard to pay for medical evaluations that yielded some direction, but took financial tolls, she studied and researched to find answers that made sense to her and her life and that she could apply that truly helped her. When she wanted to take the step and start training again to the next level and see what her body could do again she started over and understood the importance of keeping a pace that her body could adapt and integrate slowly to protect her structure and nervous system. The individuals that grew to know Amber also knew that she had survived abuse and that her nature and her autism was a vulnerable place that didn’t see the external world for that reality. Amber was exposed to violent circumstances and she came through those dangerous situations and took the time she needed to heal and overcome. These people also created protection for Amber and gave her the ability to learn to trust and begin to speak up about her life so that she could heal and rebuild.
When she wanted to become a world champion, and she did that despite her hardships, she learnt to develop the skills and tools to create a champion mindset at her pace and with the wisdom and connection of bringing her mind, body, and spirit together in a state of wholeness. She wanted to heal from trauma and learn about her nervous system and how to create internal resources and reached out to neuroscientists to help educate her on the anatomy of neurology which helped her pattern energetically what resonated with her reality. This experience brought about a whole new way of integrating functional compassion and neuroscience with health and wellness (both inside and out) and honoring the journey visualizing a destination that recognizes her in a way that is allowing and continuously transforming .
The journey is not easy, it’s a challenge and it’s not cheap and it takes longer to heal and practice with patience to remain steadfast. She is not ashamed of what happened to me nor will she apologize for it. For the past two decades Amber has been rebuilding and working on her courage, vulnerabilities, and shame. Today, she continues to rewrite the story, and continue to grow to be a better version everyday in every way. She figured out how to heal herself where science had no answers, and delt with the dark moments through finding that survival mechanism and fitness. Amber is a woman who is a survivor , not a victim, she is figuring out how to do her best each step of the way. She strives to help others through lifestyle awareness and raising consciousness, in effort to source recognition to find sources of trauma in the lives of people with intellectual/ developmental disabilities, identifies the effects of trauma, and identify key components of their healing.