This is one of those topics that I didn’t understand until I experienced it. I figured it was just like not thinking clearly, but it is like thinking through thick black smoke. I can see glimpses of thoughts or words but the worse I feel, the thicker the smoke is and the easier I lose concentration, focus, and thoughts.
I can be in the middle of a conversation when I am hit with brain fog and it is literally difficult to even understand what people are saying or what they mean. It’s like their words disappear into the darkness and I understand less and less of what is going on. I stay out of many social situations because of this.
Honestly, I have 99 problems and brain fog hasn’t been one that is high on my list to deal with. I have not looked up ways to deal with it as I just like to wing this one. I let it be the thing that tells me when my brain has had enough and there is not going to be any more “listening” going on.
Most people, in my experience, have not dealt with brain fog and they do not know how frustrating it is to basically wander through the day hoping that everything going OK. It’s more than just forgetting where I put the keys, it’s putting coffee grinds in the water tank of the coffeemaker and wondering why there is no coffee. It is putting bacon in the pan and watching it sit there for 20 minutes because I never even turned the fire on. My personal favorite is when I wear my clothes inside out or two different shoes.
It feels devastating at times because no one wants to be controlled by the unknown and certainly no one wants to be a victim of the wrinkly thing in the noggin. So, what blows away the billowing clouds of confusion? Well, for me I have to gamble and hope that either a nap or a whole night’s sleep will take care of the problem. I have also noticed that if I work during the early morning hours, I can overcome the brain fog for a while but as the day wears on, my mind becomes less trustworthy.
The upside is that there are a few things that can be done to help offset the annoyance of the fog. Make a schedule of important things either on paper or on the phone. I do both as it helps reinforce when things will be happening. I do any paperwork for doctors or really anything early and at home where I can take my time. I let other people know what my goals are so if I need help, they already know what I was trying to do. Most of all, I give myself leeway to be whatever my brain allows me to be. Forgiving myself all of the time meant that I was doing something wrong and I wasn’t, so my perspective had to shift so that there is no “fault” when I can’t do something. I am not ignoring what needs to be done, I am taking my time so I can do a good job.
My greatest hope is to make the public more aware that the human brain is just as susceptible to damage and issues as the rest of the body. Unfortunately, this does not allow others to see that there is something going on, only that this woman cannot seem to order her coffee right or that lady always forgets everything. On the other hand, I don’t want to be identified by my forgetfulness. So, I will ponder that, maybe on a day when I am not so tired.