Hell, I got through the majority of this week without mine.
Yeah, that was one little spike-strip (the thingies cops use to disable the speeding cars of thugs during car chases/pursuits) snags that hit me out of the blue, completely unexpected, lawyer-fine-print-style.
“By the way, your brain is going to feel like it just woke up from a sound sleep, that foggy-groggy feeling…except that it’s going to last all day! For several days.”
That’s what my body told me. Oh sure, I was able to climb stairs with no breathlessness, as long as I was able to pull together enough focus to decide to climb those stairs in the first place.
Which, I pretty much wasn’t.
We ended up playing hooky from work Tuesday afternoon, in favor of watching “Beavis and Butthead” because hey–that was about my cognitive speed that night. Not just because I was in the mood for it because it’s funny–which it is–but because that’s about the plot-complexity level I was capable of truly appreciating that night.
My brain had been the entitled trust-fund brat-child that had everything it wanted without so much as having to lift a finger. My nicotine cessation that became For Real on Tuesday was much akin to Entitled Brat waking up to the Entitlement Rug being pulled out from under it. Suddenly, it wasn’t simply going to have all of its neurotransmitters and fuel spoon-fed to it.
In the words of RuPaul, “you better work”.
My Entitled Brat Brain stamped its feet and pitched a fit (when, oh when will the iPhone autosuggest ever be programmed–or at least adjustable–to a Texas dialect?); of course, it’s not exactly all my brain’s fault–after all, I had fed it a bountiful, steady, reliable, continuous stream of neurotransmitter supply and stimulation; it hadn’t had to work for itself in years. Overnight, all of that changed; Entitled Brat Brain found itself out on its ass, having to work for its own survival, having to extract its own nutrients from the bloodstream and manufacture its own materials to function. I wanted to tell my brain that that was such a first world problem, but I didn’t come down too hard on it; after all, it was I who had created a monster.
The good news is, it only got better from there. The bad news is, not by much, and not without a lot of help via active effort on my part.
I walked. I sprinted. I stayed hydrated. I shoveled acetylcholine-supporting and mitochondria-boosting supplements into my mouth. I ate pretty dang well (as usual, only better). I even found it possible to get sleep (!) (three nights’ running of good sleep, a streak which seems to have ended as of tonight. Ah, hell). Anything to feed, support, entice, bribe, or jumpstart my brain, or otherwise give it a good kick in the pants.
It kind of paid off; by last night (Wednesday) I had progressed from watching “Beavis and Butthead” to being able to comprehend “Daria”. And I had been able to finish Tuesday’s abandoned workload (from the hooky-playing), even if it was arduous and difficult. Today was a bit better yet; I was up to “House MD”, and my brain was clicking along with the doctors on the show. And that’s after making it through two meetings at work, one being shorter (30 minutes), but the other lasting just shy of three hours (!).
So, progress and stuff.
Funny, reading back through this, I actually realize I’ve made more progress and come further than I thought. I was fixing to part out my brain and make offers to the highest bidders, to raise money for some Kitty Clones or something.
But as much as I could definitely use the clones, I probably need my own brain more, so I think I’ll keep it around.
Brains might be overrated, high maintenance, and entitled, and I might have made it through this week without mine, but it sucked to struggle and I wouldn’t want to go any longer without it. I’m glad my brain is getting beyond the early stages of Teaching Moment Territory and getting used to picking itself up by the bootstraps, willing to get its hands dirty.
I’ve spent a lot of time writing about my brain; for those of you who are really bored and/or gluttons for punishment, if you comb back through, you’ll see that in 380+ posts written on this blog over the past 8.5 years, I’ve never done that before. And I have no plans to do that again. Maybe a quick mention or something, but that’s it. This was a special circumstance because it happened, it was unexpected, it happened suddenly and rapidly, it occurred beyond my control, it impacted multiple important areas of life, and it caused me concern. But now that it’s on its way out, it’s likely high time to write about something else.
This week, I found that physical activity is easier, as is sleep. The latter still comes over me fairly suddenly, although I often have a bit more warning than I did before, and the sandman hits me during more conventional and predictable times.
As I write this, I’m now ending Day 3; tomorrow (Friday) will be Day 4. Tomorrow (which will be “Today” by the time I publish this, as it takes me a bit longer to write blog posts lately), I plan to go for a blood donation, which is actually a win-win (I get to dump some of my iron-oversaturated blood, to the tune of about half a liter, I think?).
And then I have a nice long Memorial Day weekend to settle into. I plan to make pretty good use of it…with or without the full use of my overrated, Entitled Brat brain. 😉