A closed mouth gathers no foot. - My Dad
Sarcasm is the lowest form of wit. - My Mom
I’ll lift you and you lift me and we'll both ascend together. - John Greenleaf Whittier
If you ever get lonely you just go to the record store and visit your friends. - Penny Lane
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud became more painful than the risk it took to blossom. – Anais Nin
This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness. - Dalai Lama
When the student is ready, the master appears. - Buddhist Proverb
Whatever you look for in others tends to rise to the surface. - Unknown
If you’re smilin with the cosmos the motherfuckin cosmos is smiling back at ya. - Chris Robinson
Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn't learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn't learn a little, at least we didn't get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn't die; so, let us all be thankful. - Buddha
August 31, 2012
My Brain is Broken
I've always had a bad memory and a hard time concentrating, especially in school. As an incentive, my Dad used to pay me for getting A's - he never had to shell out a dime. It was useless because my brain was doing the best it could, but the best it could do was shitola. I remember (I remember!) my friends would never have to study for tests and I would kill myself trying to put all the mumbo jumbo in my head together. The only area I excelled in was English, and even though I still made crappy grades in honors classes, I was at least retaining some of that information. Maybe so I could write this blog. I never even went to college as I knew I would struggle to pay attention in class. The booze and drugs would have been no problem for me though.
Over the past year or so I noticed that all of it seemed to be getting worse. I would have conversations with my friends and completely forget the conversations. I went to the movies with my BFF and then 3 days later asked her if she saw the movie. WTF right? I know. I was easily overwhelmed at work, unable to finish one task without starting another - same with cleaning my house - start cleaning the kitchen, go to the bathroom to get something, then start cleaning the bathroom, and so on and so on. Of course, this whole revelation brought on some anxiety for me...trepidation if you will. I started to want to do, see, and know less so I wouldn't forget it or I wouldn't get stressed out about it and that is no way to live. On top of all of it, I have an Aunt that passed away last year from the effects of Alzheimer's. She had it for about 12 years and it was devastating.
So, last week I paid my first visit ever to a psychiatrist and he diagnosed me with MCI (I already knew I had ADD from a diagnosis made about 8 years ago) and thus came the harsh reality of what was happening to me and how some of my lifestyle choices were doing major, irreversible damage to my brain, aiding in the steady decline of my mind. The cause of the disease itself is rather simple - my brain slacks at absorbing Folate and B vitamins and I was born this way. Okay, cool. But can you guess what the major, self controlled contributor to my brain rot is? ALCOHOL. Alcohol is killing my brain cells. I drink too much at one time, I black out, and when I do so my brain blacks out with me, causing some serious spoilage to the few remaining cells in there. Who would have thought that 20 years of getting totally shit faced and forgetting most of the night would be a bad thing? Oh, and come to find out I'm a "binge drinker" - meaning I don't drink during the week but I sure do make up for it on the weekends.
Needless to say, finding all this out was a real eye opener for me and scared me quite a bit. When someones says "signs of pre-dementia" to you - unless you're a total idiot, you pay attention. What I'm happy to report is that the condition can be greatly improved with a "brain vitamin" and an anti-depressant to control the ADD and anxiety, both of which I have started to take and am already feeling the positive effects from. YAY!!
Here's a shocker - I am avoiding alcohol for a while. I've always thought it would be really difficult to stop drinking (or cut back at least) but now I'm convinced it won't be, although it's only been a week...ask me how I feel next week.
Overall, I am much more relaxed and at ease with the whole situation. Knowing what's wrong and knowing that there are fixes are two of the most settling feelings you can have. I'm grateful beyond words for modern day medicine and couldn't be happier about my sober future. Okay, that's probably a partial lie but let's just go with it for now.
Speaking of sober...it's Labor Day weekend and I don't have to worry about a DUI, a hangover, or breaking my bank account. That is good shit right there.
Happy Labor Day!