I have known for a while I suffer from widow brain. Can’t find my keys, barely remember what day it is or what my name is. I have looked for my car keys for twenty minutes only to find they were in my hand.. the whole time. I have to set reminders in my phone from things like taking my sleeping pill to grab my lunch out of the fridge before leaving for work. I have to have a reminder for everything.
Lately I have noticed a new side effect of widowhood. I guess it goes along the lines of widow brain. Maybe I have always had it and I’m just becoming more aware of my “issues.”
I had intended to write about the crappiness of turning 40 over the weekend as a widow. How much I wish Ian was here to mark this milestone, and because he's not, I had no real desire to celebrate or really mark the occasion. But have friends insisting that I do so (so compromised with a very expensive dinner for a small group of friends).
But then I could have burnt the house down on Thursday.
Thanks to widow brain.Read more
My brain is still more disorganized than it was before Dave died. I marvel in an almost morbid way, at the dementia-like symptoms I still exhibit. They'd be funny if they weren't so embarrassing and worrisome. I wish I could laugh them off but I feel shame about them. I feel like there's something wrong with me. I feel like I'm in a state of mild to moderate disorientation WAY too often.
I was talking with my guy the other day about a friend of his, Charlie, who was coming to town and how we'd go out to dinner with him when he was here. In the pause between that conversation and the next, I looked at my calendar to confirm that evening was free and saw "Charlie" in my calendar as an appointment for that day. "Who's Charlie?" I said "And why is his/her name in my calendar?" In a matter of seconds, I'd forgotten what we were just talking about.
I am the Friday writer here at Widow's Voice. That means, that every single Friday, a blog post written by me goes up. Technically, I write the post late Thursday night, so as to have it finished by the deadline of midnight West Coast time, which is 3 a.m. my time. So, you would think that because I have been writing in here for quite awhile now, and because it is the same part of my weekly routine in life, and because I have it in my head that every Thursday night before bed, I write here - AND I have a giant desk calendar that reads in big letters "Write Widow's Voice" in the little Thursday boxes - that I wouldn't regularly forget to write in here. Well, you would be all kinds of wrong.Read more
There is a saying in Zen: Before Enlightenment, chop wood, carry water. After enlightenment, chop wood, carry water.
After Mike died I couldn't function coherently at all for about a week. I couldn't focus on the basic necessities of cooking, cleaning, errands...even driving. I really could not drive for at least a week. Thank goodness my family and friends were around to help. They literally had to do it all those first days. It's why I understand now the Hawaiian tradition of immediately showing up at someone's house after a death, bringing food, and staying around to help out with whatever was needed. Back on the East coast where I grew up people may be more likely to think they should leave you alone to grieve - I don't know, maybe some people might prefer that. But I don't think I would have made it that way. I am so grateful my house was full that first week.Read more
Who put that there...?
...the bottle of brown sauce in the crockery cupboard?
Did I put it there... or did John?
I don't remember doing that... but I don't remember seeing John in the kitchen while I was cooking dinner, either.
Everything is so damn scary for me these days. Just speaking up and saying what I think feels like too much of a risk. It's as though my confidence died with Dave.
I know I'm courageous only because I can see now that I acted many times since Dave died despite nearly crippling fear. But I don't feel courageous. I feel so scared that I want to curl up in a ball and hide from the world.
I love memoirs. I read a memoir a week, I'd estimate. The last one I read was not one of my favorites in regard to writing style, but it was about a woman who'd had an aneurysm and her subsequent healing.
In the book, she lists the mental symptoms she and other aneurysm patients often struggle with. As I read the list, I realized with a shock that I had experienced nearly every single one in the aftermath of Dave's death.
.... or am I just a moron?
I'd like to think it's Widda Brain.
But how long can I claim that?
I mean, my life is forever changed because I've been widowed .... it will never be the same. Ever.
So .... I should be able to claim "incapacitation due to Widda Brain".
It should be an accepted medical term.
I wonder if it's an accepted mental health term?
Anyway .... I'll tell you what happened (I can NOT believe I'm telling you what happened!).
(Surprisingly enough, I wrote this post before I read Amanda's post from yesterday. It seems we know some of the same people! :)
It's about money.
Or the lack thereof.