A mind of two halves

Whatever is happening out there in the world, right here, winter has arrived and the lead into Christmas along with it. Sorry, if that disappoints you, but I am sure there are quite a few out there, that are right there with me and fully understanding my reasons. The best Saturday night TV viewing of the year has begun, “Strictly come dancing” followed by “Dr who”. It’s odd how two programs, that are the total opposite of my normal style of viewing, have so totally taken over my view at this time of year and the excitement that I find in the fact that they are both back. I am anything but a bubble gum TV viewer, give me a good documentary or failing that just the BBC news and I am happy, but I just can’t resist these two programs. I guess we all have those guilty secrets, those things that our mind tell us are ridiculous, but our hearts jump with glee at the mere prospect of. So that’s me happy until Christmas, even though the good “Dr” doesn’t run until then, I know the “Beeb” won’t let me down. They always find something as deeply bubble gum and good to take us through to the end of the year.

It’s odd how you change over time to fit your abilities and demands. 30 years ago, I didn’t really care what was on TV, I had too much to do to pay that much attention. Every evening once all my tasks had eventually been completed at around 8 pm, I eventually sat down. Well, I did have two kids and a typical home for the time. No gadgets, beyond a washing machine and a hoover, and I was a fussy housewife, so enough to keep me busy from 6 am to 8 pm. When I broke for the day, it was to knit and sew clothing for the family, or decoration for our home. TV was a background as the radio was during the day. 25 years ago, I was a DJ, didn’t care about my home as I was never there and as for TV, I never saw it. 15 years ago, once again a proud housewife and busy business woman, constantly working or cleaning, with no time to just sit down and watch anything. Now, I don’t clean my home Adam does, I don’t work, I don’t go out and I don’t have the dexterity to make anything. TV, the once somewhere in the background item, has become my companion. Regardless of anything else it is always on, and I always have something to watch or at least listen to from a continual supply of programs I have recorded or downloaded. Right now I am listening to a documentary about world war 2, as I write. Yes, I can do both, not as well as I once did, but I can. The silence without it would drive me mad.

Once silence was a joy, now it just reminds me that I am sat here alone. Silence sounds somehow like a prison. A reminder that I can’t make the noise that once filled my life. That I am locked inside its walls, with no escape. During the day, the TV teaches me, learning something all the time is one of the few things I can still do although I have no outlet or requirement for that knowledge, it somehow makes me feel more complete, more part of the world. No matter how well you might adjust to being housebound, the one thing you still need is to feel attached to the world. For me, that is what learning does. It can be history, or any other subject if it deepens my understanding of life, then it is keeping me connected to it. My last job was probably the job I actually loved the most. What I loved about it was that I never stopped learning, from the day I took on the role, I never stopped. I taught myself everything I could need and more about computers, from programming then onwards. I had to learn about business, laws, regulations and best practices, all needed updating constantly, I spent more time researching than anything else and I loved it. When it ended, I felt lost.

I didn’t even realise what I was doing when I decided that I was going to learn all I could about the two world wars, a subject that chose me rather than the other way around. It had just been there one day after a show I chose and I didn’t change the channel, oddly, it was interesting and that as they say ” the rest is now history”. I had unintentionally replacing that discovered need through work to learn, by learning about life. I can’t tell anyone how to replace what they miss from their working life, but I bet that learning something new, would help anyone and TV is a wonderful passive way to learn and doesn’t cost you a thing. Keeping our minds entertained and busy is essential. Sit on your settee day in day out doing nothing and watching endless bubble gum and movies and you are going to deteriorate before you even see it happening. Just like good posture and good relaxation helps out bodies, I truly believe that learning helps our minds to stay connected.

I woke last night once again needing to head for the loo. My mind may have worked out how to sleep every night for ridiculously long periods of time, but my body hasn’t. I pleased and surprised that I managed to get to the bathroom, stopping off for a cigarette and back to bed, without once seeing Adam. As always, wheels or not, I did the entire journey in total darkness and without banging into anything too heavily. More importantly, I didn’t wake Adam. I was lying in bed, starting to head back into sleep and feeling rather chuffed with myself, when I suddenly noticed that the entire right side of my face was freezing. I didn’t have to think about it, I knew it was the nerves playing up. There was no other reason why only one side of my face should be trying to tell me, that the outside temperature was several degrees below zero. There has been no improvement in my face sensations and movements at all. It is still my right side that is the worst and it does seem to still be spreading. More and more of it keeps sort of setting if you like. The movement required to speak or even smile at times, from my side, feels set still and unchanged. Adam has stopped asking if I have a cold, but I am becoming more and more aware of it, even without his reminders. What I don’t like personally, is that I can now feel it far more clearly, right up to my eye level and crossing the bridge of my nose. There are no time limits as to how long things keep getting worse, or when they will stop or even get better. All anyone can do is wait and see.

I really do seem just now to be falling apart again. The speech changes that the doctor noticed when I was at the hospital wasn’t due to the right side of my face, but the fact that I can’t end my sentences and get lost in my words. They too are happening more and more. In the last couple of months, I have been really aware of them, usually when things are tense or uptight. In the last couple of days, they are happening even when I am totally relaxed. A year ago, I would have held onto my last word and not let go until I found it’s missing friends. Now, I just stop. It is as though without permission, my brain has decided that there isn’t a point in fighting it any longer and that I have accepted that my brain just isn’t up to it, I haven’t. I am now totally unable to finish what I was saying, the blank is so deep that I don’t even have that feeling any longer that the word is on the tip of my tongue, as it isn’t. It has totally vanished for all time and there is no way of finding it. That was something that used to happen occasionally, now it is the norm. Worse still, it used to happen a couple of times a day under normal living stresses, now it happens every few sentences, even without stress. I knew exactly what my consultant was pointing out, what I didn’t know was that it is now as active as my muscle problems. Yesterday, was a mess, from my sentence to my last. Adam quite sweetly tried to say that it wasn’t that bad and was only showing signs of getting worse in the last couple of days, when I checked him, he shut up. Proof, he was just being nice.

Everything seems to be active just now, I don’t know why, but that is just the way it is. I guess, I am in another relapse, it’s just a matter of waiting until it comes to an end. That’s always the problem, they can last hours, days or weeks and when you live also with progression, it’s always hard to know which is which.

Please read my blog from 2 years ago today – 27/08/2013 – Connections of life

I don’t know why I didn’t think about it before but I now can see a clear reason why I choose to blog rather than just join into one of those groups, well actually I can think of million reasons not to join a group, but that’s another post. I started years ago with one of those slopes that once stood on never….