absence

Ah, there I am.  I’ve been walking around in a verbal fog for the last month.  My writing voice has been stilled.  My poor old beaten up brain can only do one big thing at a time, apparently.  I will assume that once my verbal re-wiring is complete (enough), my writing will return.

I miss my community here, but there is so very little to do about that.  More waiting.  6-1/2 months post hospital.  I could not imagine that life would be this strange and that it would continue un-know-ably.  That is to say, the re-wiring of so many facets of me continues to take me by surprise, except for expecting the surprises.

The good news:  I’m improving.  I’ve been working with a physical therapist who understands brain trauma and that even in minimal brain trauma, the most mundane and “I learned that when I learned to walk as a toddler” tasks can be affected.  Hence the difficulty and resulting exhaustion of taking a walk on a familiar cobbled beach.

Now I understand why JustI of JustUsSociety posted that video back in April about the brain researcher, Jill Bolte-Taylor, who watched herself suffer a catastrophic stroke.  At the time, I didn’t get the significance.   So many commenters here seemed to understand that I had suffered brain trauma; I depended on your feedback because I didn’t know, being stashed behind that benign fog, but I listened.

I’m having trouble forming memories and when I try to search for a previous moment, the effort is often too great, too tiring.  Sometimes I confuse memory with dreaming.  It does make me realize how inconsequential most memories are as single moments, but how as a whole those memories give breadth to a life.

I have since discovered a US Veterans Administration PTSD website that discusses minimum brain trauma (they call it minimum traumatic brain injury or mTBI) and its logical relationship to PTSD.  I have been fascinated, and relieved, by the neuropsychiatry discussed (this link takes a bit to load because it is a Flash file).  The PTSD symptoms are still very much with me and force me to keep a low profile.  But I’m stubborn so I keep trying, keep pushing my boundaries.

I’m also in the mosaics studio most days for a couple of hours.  Creativity is still blunted, but I am able to better “see” the patterns and line expressions in the works I copy.  Very good news indeed.

I do have moments of rage against the medical machine, sending me home without a hint of what the next year could hold.  How could you leave me twisting in the wind?   You left my family twisting in the wind, too.  Ripple effect.

This writing has been very difficult–I am having trouble recognizing grammatical structure and misspelling so often that the delete key has a divot in it now, plus I’m typing words backwards and even typing words I don’t intend to type. (!!)  (Hope this essay is readable because I can’t edit it for sh*t!)  The effort required is reminiscent of the attempts to make conversation or the effort required to compose a post in those early days.

I will close with pics of my garden so we all can relax now.

globe thistles covered in bees!

Oriental lilies

crocosmia and honeysuckle backed by lily

Advertisements

32 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. jacquiefioramonti
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 11:32:16

    Perfectly readable and so appreciated knowing how difficult it is for you to write this. I’m so glad you are back. I missed your posts.

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Aug 30, 2012 @ 11:35:28

      Oh good, so glad it was readable. Dang! As a longtime editor, this is a very strange spot to be.

      Thanks for stopping in Jacquie. Nice to have you here!

      Reply

  2. neowatercolour
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 11:50:29

    Its so good to hear you’re improving, L, keep gently nudging those boundaries. Loved the garden photos, very tranquil. Good to see you back, L, and didn’t notice a single typo :-) V xxx

    Reply

  3. neowatercolour
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 13:20:59

    Of course you can :-) You’re incorrigible, ….DooBeeDoo……….

    Reply

  4. Debra Kolkka
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 14:26:21

    I hope you are back on track soon.

    Reply

  5. FeyGirl
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 15:16:53

    Much love and luck to you as you gently push through this process… From the looks of things, you’re doing better than me, LOL! I can’t manage a single post without typos in the headings. :) Such lovely images, too…. ♥

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Aug 30, 2012 @ 17:24:29

      hee hee! apparently nobody *important* cares about typos!

      Thank you so much for stopping in, FeyGirl. Anita (nadbugs/catself) sent me to your site the day you posted pics of those fabulous dragonflies so I’d have beauty to tide me over through this weird-a** time.

      I’ve only been in Florida once, but not in the Everglades, so I have learned a ton! While I was birdwatching in the preserve outside the spaceship joint, I did see an alligator (croc? can’t remember) when I was there–submerged the way they do. I quietly backed up and jammed myself into that rental car and hoped he/she wasn’t hungry or annoyed!

      Reply

      • FeyGirl
        Aug 31, 2012 @ 05:19:20

        Aw, I’m so glad the pretty dragonflies helped lift your spirits!! :)

        Alligators can look so very intimidating, but they’re truly amazing creatures. Monogamous for long periods of time, VERY protective of their young (the mommas), and so very…OLD on this planet! They really don’t want to bother us — they’re shy, just like most wildlife, and want nothing more than to be left ALONE. I love ’em!

        Reply

      • FeyGirl
        Aug 31, 2012 @ 05:23:25

        Aw, I’m so thrilled that the pretty dragonflies lifted your spirits! :)

        Gators can certainly be intimidating, but they’re truly amazing and misunderstood creatures… monogamous for long periods of time, and highly protective of their babies (well, the mommas at least!). And the fact that they’re so old on this planet…It’s fascinating. Just like most wildlife, they’re quite shy, and want nothing more than to be left alone — but people are very cruel with them, to be bullies. I adore them — just intriguing creatures.

        Reply

        • lahgitana
          Aug 31, 2012 @ 08:52:47

          It IS amazing to think of looking at the very distant past in the face of an alligator.

          You do such good things in giving voice to the life around the humans and the need for respect there.

          People. Hmmm. Yes. What shall we do with them? More ideas?! >:-D Perhaps we should customize the “experience” for the offenders: if you mess with an alligator, you have to live in a similar environment, nekkid and alone. Yeah that’s it!

          Reply

  6. heretherebespiders
    Aug 30, 2012 @ 15:17:20

    Am I okay to like this despite the inherent pain? Yes, dear L, you are spot on in your writing, as always. It might feel awkward during the act, but you still have “it”! I’m feeling bad because I’ve been in my own, non-medically-induced, screwy headspace and haven’t been paying proper attention to those I care about, and I apologise for it. I’ve missed you, even if I haven’t said so.

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Aug 30, 2012 @ 17:17:56

      ah, dear, it has been a weird time for a lot of folks, hasn’t it? going underground…. but this community is amazing and i know in my soul that I am a part of it.

      So nice to hear from you, but do take all the time you need. Time, time, time sometimes is the only fix….

      Isn’t it odd how I struggle with the writing, but it seems just fine to others? This is crazy-making! Except for the purple and blue hair, I’m reg’lar on the outside. >:-D

      Reply

  7. minlit
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 00:47:47

    I’m in Birmingham this week, so I’ll probably be joining you in the traumatised brain section next week :)

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Aug 31, 2012 @ 08:48:47

      lotsa room! pull up a chair! just don’t forget where you put it! Or that you were planning to sit down! >:-D

      Happy vendor fair. May your cards go flying off the shelves with huge-enough orders!

      Reply

  8. nadbugs
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 12:06:32

    Ahh Lagghie — just write, will ya? If you can possibly do so as close to effortlessly as you can? You see from the comments how much anything you say means to us all — and all your posts are so far from “just anything” —

    Didja see Feygirl’s latest, about the snowy egret in the setting sun? A fantasy come true. SO THRILLED you guys are linked-up. I feel a lot of commonality between the two of yiz and moi.

    And my inner schoolmarm can’t help but add this: Brains do not respond well to being pushed. Brains like *space.* Quite literally. Effortlessly extending the imagination into space induces alpha-synchronized brain-waves and let me tell you honey, alpha-synchronized brain waves are like a vacation outta nuthin! Amazing!

    I have come to learn this by doing Les Fehmi’s Open Focus exercises at least twice daily. I never never miss. Because the feeling I get from them is simply heaven, and my life simply improves reliably every single time.

    Check it out? You can try an exercise for free . . . . All he asks in return is your e-mail address to which he’ll send notices from time to time – nothing too burdensome; I either read or delete as needed. Here’s the link for how to get the free download:

    http://www.openfocus.com/

    Look @ L; see PROMOTIONS to sign up for the free thing.

    And then if you’d like to explore more, see PRODUCTS –> Categories @ L –> 35 downloadable MP3s at a (modest) price each.

    He (Les Fehmi) has also written some books about the theory: The OPEN FOCUS BRAIN and DISSOLVING PAIN.

    I’ve read the first one and, also, downloaded more meditations on a CD that comes with that book (I got it through interlibrary loan). I began the Pain book but then Fangie died and no way could I meet the interlibrary loan due-date . . . but just on the little bit I did read the Pain one seemed more helpful than the Brain one.

    In any case, I rely on the advanced version of “Dissolving Pain” meditation I bought from the website; that’s been the key one to helping me with residual back pain and, also, emotional pain.

    I really hope you enjoy and get into this – it’s been phenomenally helpful to me.

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Aug 31, 2012 @ 12:37:41

      OK OK! I’ll write. It takes several Nerf bricks to the head from my friends to get the message through.

      I will respond (lots) more later; I’m out in the studio where I’ve brought my computer to do some mosaic inventory housekeeping. I got distracted! hahahahahahahaha!

      Reply

  9. Big Mister, Big Ooooolllaaaah. Big, etc.
    Aug 31, 2012 @ 20:07:53

    Yaaayyyyy!!!

    Reply

  10. sweetdaysundertheoaks
    Sep 01, 2012 @ 17:15:15

    Laurel my heart breaks for you cause you know my anxiety issues and they leave me befuddled so I kind of get what you have going on. I love your sense of funny that helps you cope. Ima kick 2012 in the a$$ and not let the door hit it on the way out.

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Sep 01, 2012 @ 18:24:19

      Ah Pix, anxiety is rough. I found a good discussion of a coping mechanism on the VA site–mindfulness–you may get something out of it: http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/pages/mindful-ptsd.asp. I think it’s a repeat of all the wisdom around here, just in a different package.

      Humor is an amazing healer. YOU made ME laugh with the kick 2012 in the a$$–I think I may let the door hit it HARD on the way out!

      Reply

      • sweetdaysundertheoaks
        Sep 02, 2012 @ 03:36:47

        Laurel thank you for the link. I WILL be checking it out. I have been using a book called Zen Living like a bible since last February but the drought situation overwhelmed me and I lost my sense of Zen and came all undone… :) It’s RAINING this morning!!

        Reply

        • lahgitana
          Sep 02, 2012 @ 07:21:36

          From your writing, I feel the oppressiveness. It’s like being flattened in one of those rooms where the ceiling and walls move downward and inward till you’re crouched in a corner. We had “heat” of 85 for about 5 days and by the end of THAT, I was flattened. In drought, the very air changes. So, tryin’ to say: undone seems quite expected!

          Oh cooling rain. I so hope that Isaac’s effects linger and the ground softens somewhat.

          For more Ommmmmmmm stuff, see Anita’s links. She’s a wise one, she is, and knows from relaxation.

          In the meantime, slowly slowly…. (look at me, listening to all of you and passing on the wisdom!)

          Reply

  11. IsobelandCat
    Sep 03, 2012 @ 03:01:52

    Good to read you again. You are perfectly readable, and very coherent, so relax. This will be a great record for you further down the line to see how far you have travelled.
    I agree that to be discharged from hospital without a hint of the map is wrong. No wonder we end up back in doctors’ surgeries asking questions.
    And I love your photos.
    Are the cats providing therapy too?

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Sep 04, 2012 @ 09:57:10

      Hey Isobel! Yes, these musings could be a chapbook for navigating the aftermath of sepsis!

      I (almost) understand the hospital saying nothing, but my own doc had nothing to say when I saw her 5 days out of hospital. That I certainly do not understand, nor do I like it. However, the shiny silver lining is that I’m at last forced to face my own preferences about my medical care and act accordingly. Quite a nice thing, really.

      The poor cats have been inundated with fleas, which means we have also. So, no, they are not good therapy right now. We should soon have the flea population beaten back and we’ll all live happily once again!

      Reply

  12. JustI
    Sep 03, 2012 @ 10:40:18

    I’m glad to see you’re writing again! I know, I haven’t been very wordy here lately, but I do try and keep up with the blogs I follow. Keep on keeping on! I love the thistle and sunflowers. Beautiful pics!

    Reply

  13. 10000hourstobe
    Sep 04, 2012 @ 11:08:59

    Hey there, sweetie! It’s like a breath of fresh air to read you again. You are funny, smart, honest, and REAL! Your writing is a gift…you can see how many of us love to see you show up in our inbox (smile).

    Reply

    • lahgitana
      Sep 06, 2012 @ 08:18:22

      Hey You! How sweet you are. I don’t summon the words, they just pour out of me, so it feels incorrect to take any credit for the writing I do! >:-D

      Still waiting to hear about the nonprofit opportunity!

      Reply

Go ahead! Share!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Creative Commons License

%d bloggers like this: