Thanks to the brain that dislikes me greatly, I have so many challenges and issues that I didn't have before. Ill list a majority of them now and I'm sure after reading them, you will have issues as well.
MEMORY- You have read enough about that already!
CONCENTRATION - I can't concentrate on more than one thing at a time, I can't comprehend more than one piece of information, it scares me and I get frustrated. I used to be able to multi-task, not anymore. If too much is going on in my head, none of it gets done. The same goes with conversations, I can't have any distractions if I'm talking to someone whether in person or on the phone. If there is any noise or another conversation going on next to me, I can't deal with it. I hear too much and I don't listen to what is being said to me, I just want to scream and I need everything to be silent.
FOOD - I have to dish up my own dinner; I don't like the different foods on my plate touching each other. I have no idea why and I know that its weird but I can't help it. I get so stressed if the food touches and then I don't want to eat it. I also have problems with swallowing - thanks to my stupid brain! A muscle in my throat has been slowed down. I dread eating in case I have the problem swallowing it. Sometimes I don't have trouble at all, other times I can't finish what I'm eating as the problem has got so bad, I feel like I can't breathe and the food just sits at the back of my throat and takes longer to go down. I have to make sure that whatever I eat has some kind of sauce/liquid on it so it's easier to swallow. If I have a roast dinner, I usually have to make up a second lot of gravy just for me. Because of these problems, I am reluctant to have dinner at other people's houses. There are certain people that I'm comfortable with and who know my problems-like my family, but if anyone else asks me for dinner I'm likely to turn them down. If I'm not 100% comfortable, my problem will just get worse. How do I begin to explain to people? It would feel rude asking to dish up my own dinner. 'Excuse me, can I dish up my own dinner, you might make the food touch'. That's odd!
LIKES - There are lots of things I used to like that I don't anymore. TV Programmes, foods, clothes, hobbies/activities and some people. I can't understand why my likes have changed and it's strange. 2 examples- I used to eat porridge every morning whether winter or summer, but now the thought of it makes me feel sick. I used to watch Big Brother religiously but now even the theme tune does my head in- some people will probably agree with me on that one. I have lost interest and enjoyment with a lot of things, I can start watching a film and after 15 minutes I've had enough, there are very few activities that I can do now where I don't lose interest.
COMPANY - I can only be around people that I'm comfortable with, these are the people that are supportive and who try to understand-my real friends and family. There are people that I used to be close to but now it seems they want nothing to do with me, they never ask how I am and I get the impression that they don't understand why I'm still not 'better'. I have no room for these people in my life now; if they don't care about me then the feeling is mutual. I haven't needed them yet so I'm not going to need them now, their ignorance is their problem. I am not good with strangers, I feel uncomfortable and I never used to be like that. If I go to a party or out, whoever I'm with is my 'safe' place, if I can see them or they are next to me then I'm fine, if I can't see them then I panic.
IMPULSIVE - I am very impulsive now, whether it's right or wrong. If it's in my head, I do it or say it and sod the consequences. If I woke up in the middle of the night and thought about cleaning the oven, I would get up and clean the oven. That's sad!
FINANCES - I have lost all financial responsibility. I don't have that part of me anymore that was organised with bills and money, this doesn't come naturally to me now, I would much rather buy shiny new things. This doesn't go well with my impulsiveness! You will see in a few chapters the effects of my loss of financial responsibility.
CRITICAL - I am very critical of others now, especially people that I don't like. I criticise everything that they do and I feel good about it. That's childish! I don't know whether I notice people's behaviours more now but I never used to be this critical.
ANGER - I now get angry very easily. Emotions like upset, frustration or if I'm agitated all turn into anger. I completely lose all thought when I'm angry, I get hot and I feel the need to be violent in some way whether that's throwing something or hitting something. My favourite thing seems to be knocking things over, like knocking everything off a table or worktop. After getting angry, I have very little re-collection of it, it's like I zone out.
There are so many odd things/changes that I have now, some of which I'm still discovering.
PERSONALITY - This is the biggest change. I don't know who I am anymore, there are so many things that I recognise are different but I can't do anything about them. No-one will understand this but I died in that accident. My body is still here but me, Jan, the person I knew isn't here. It feels like the only bit of the old Jan that's left is only there to recognise the changes and find them odd, nothing else. My brain has been taken over by something else and I don't like it. I used to be patient, kind, a worrier, I cared about what other people thought, I never said what I thought so as not to offend, I was quite calm and I worked as a carer and was good at it. Now I'm none of them things. Now, I'm horrible!
I have no patience and I have lost my 'filter', what is in my head comes out of my mouth and I don't care who I offend. I have no regard for other people's feelings, I don't realise that someone might be upset, but if it's me that has upset them I don't care. I realise that I'm like this now but there's nothing I can do about it. I used to worry about things, what other people thought and I was quite sensitive. Now I don't worry at all and what people think is their opinion and their problem. I rarely cry now and if I do, it's usually something to do with the brain injury. It's like I'm cut off emotionally apart from the horrible emotions, I'm good at them. I used to be a tactile person but now I'm not interested. I hug my Husband because he is my Husband, I don't need to or have a desire to be hugged by anyone. I'm very controlling now but there is a reason why. This is a subject on its own so ill talk about it later.
Because of all that, if I met me, I wouldn't like me. You probably don't like me now but unfortunately for you, I haven't finished.
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