Sometimes you think you’re doing all you can to maintain the appearance of normalcy then your brain throws you a curve ball thrown at you from a speeding car and you just can’t prevent the crash from happening.
My daughter (Jessica) lives with me. Wednesday I was working on my final paper. I was stressed, but I felt like I could handle it.
Then I lost time. Thursday at 10 a.m. Jessica found me in my room, still fully dressed, laying on top of my blanket, with my glasses still on, the light was on and there was blank computer paper all over the room.
When she woke me up I immediately panicked. I was supposed to have written my rough draft and was due to meet with my professor in 2 hours.
I didn’t write anything apparently. The folder for that class had been deleted form my computer.
All the lights in the house were still on. I guess I hadn’t fed my beta fish because their lights were still on. I don’t know if I took my dog out before it happened.
My laptop was on the floor in the other room, open, and the battery dead. On the sofa my research was neatly stacked and still in the order I was going to use them in.
I think I remember sitting down and getting ready to write. Then… nothing.
I’m missing 14 hours.
I was sent to the emergency room at the hospital. They found nothing and hours later they sent me home. I still don’t know what happened.
Why was there blank computer paper all over my room? What happened to me?
I’ve talked to the hospital doctors, my counselor, and my retarded med provider and we all agree my brain had enough and the stress I carry with me every day finally caused me to shut down. The med provider said she’s had other patients do that. She just told me to keep doing my relaxation techniques and not to take my chill pill. I’m not certain why.
My professor knows what happened and is working with me to be able to turn something on Sunday so I can graduate. I have excellent timing.
I woke up about 2 hours ago and I think it happened again. I found my iPad next to me on my bed and my glasses part way under me. I must have been watching something… but I don’t remember what. I don’t know why my iPad was on my bed and my glasses still also on the bed.
I’m so confused.
Now I’m remembering that I’ve been waking up with my glasses on, the light on and something like the iPad next to me for some time now. I had just thought I was tired.
One of my son’s yelled at me because he thinks we should have called him at told him I was in the ER. Looking back I probably should have. But you know what?
I was embarrassed.
I suspected it was anxiety. I think I felt it would make me look sicker to them, my kids. Why the he’ll would that matter? They know I have an alphabet following me around (like Bpd, PTSD, GA, FM, IBSD, RA, OA. And let’s add chronic pain.) Why did I feel the need to hide It?
I’ve been going to the University of Washington Tacoma for three years. Last quarter I started having trouble getting along with others in class. I thought this quarter I was doing better….
I just wanted to be like all the other students and act normal.
Normal. I’m not normal.
The other day I gave a presentation in my advanced writing class and I turned it into a stand up comedy bit. The class was laughing hysterically. I was so funny. I didn’t follow the guidelines for the assignment at all and I even kind of insulted the professor. I got an A- on it. I was so excited. I love doing that, being funny like that. Whenever I’ve had the chance to do it people crack up.
If everything seemed to be going well, what the hell happened?
I’ve always known that the brain is more complicated than the universe and we know almost nothing about it, but this, this is beyond me.
I’ve been awake since I woke up at about 4. I don’t want to go to sleep. My brain isn’t playing fair. If I decide to go back to sleep… will I wake up?
I blame the incredibly high stress on 2 people: myself for not exercising, not eating well and not meditating or practicing mindfulness or something, anything, that might have helped. And I blame my med provider because I’ve been asking her to try another medication because my anxiety was growing and growing for the whole sic months or so I’ve been seeing her and she’s done nothing. I’m going to demand someone else. I just hope there is someone else and that they know what they’re going. And I’d started feeling like I wanted to hurt myself and still she changed nothing.
I don’t understand why I didn’t call my other kids. I feel embarrassed and ashamed. I’ve not felt like this before. I feel like I’ve just proved that I still can’t hold a job and my kids have to babysit me and my mother has to support me financially. I don’t want to keep being a burden.
Since I lost all that time I’ve decided to push how horrible I feel and use this as a reset button. I graduate Monday. After that I’m leaning a bi-weekly writers club, a fellowship really, with people who signed up when I announced I was going to do it.
Robin, your peers respect you or they wouldn’t have signed up and started asking when the first meeting was going to be.
What have I learned? My brain is more delicate and yet more resilient than I ever imagined.
I’m creative and I’m funny and I’m respected. I’m going to finish my book, get fit and interact with friends. I haven’t had real friends who I could see in person for may be 20 years. Honest truth. I’ve been so lonely, yet so afraid they would find out something is wrong with me.
I do still believe that my particular brain gives me the ability to do things that are special and amazing. I must always strive to be stronger in body and mind. I’m afraid of this blackout happening again, but even so, I’m graduating from college at 55 years old with a sever disability. That’s pretty cool.
I need to believe what my kids keep telling me, that I am the one who went back to school and got my degree. I did that and that’s amazing.
Probably my biggest problem is my inability to shut my brain off. I worry all the time. I’m going to try to replace that worry by engaging myself fully in projects I’m excited about.
I’m going to remember that I can make a difference and that um special in a good way. I’m completely unique and it’s time to put that to good use.
I’m going to nap now that I’ve worked through all that. Despite my not so great feelings that are still there… I can do anything.
I lost time. Maybe I became like a baby and was reborn to a new start. A new beginning. And this post has become as long as a chapter in a book. Time to stop.
Dear Reader, keep on pressing on. We’re gonna be okay. We can even be great!