I have a black hole for much of December. I can’t remember much from that period of time. Hell, I don’t even remember much of my hospital stay in early January (it went by in a blur). Sometimes, I can stare at the wall, and then look at the clock and wonder how an hour went by. That’s my sense of time and memory these days. Big black holes.
I went to speech therapy (yes, it’s called ‘speech’ but they work on memories too) today for the first time and afterwards was just nearly in tears. I say nearly because I haven’t been able to cry for a few days, no matter how hard I try to cry. This, after a week of bursting into tears very easily. Anyway, I was just so blown away at my own condition–I really just can’t remember a whole lot of stuff. Before I drove on to get my blood test done (yes, I get blood tests regularly so that my arms look like a heroin user), I just sat in my car and stared out the windows, wondering, “How the hell could this have happened to me.” Yes, I know a cliched thought, but that’s what I thought.
It’s easy to deceive myself. I can move around just fine. I can speak just fine. I can hold a conversation. Hell, I can write a blog post. But I can’t remember a lot of stuff, and I have a hard time remembering, and I’ve lost memories, and I can’t read anywhere near as much as I used to be able to. I can read 4 pages a day, as opposed to the hundreds of pages of fiction I could read before.
Then I saw a news story on The Kim family, you know the family that got stuck in Oregon and then it snowed and then the father went out to get help and died while his wife and little daughters finally got saved. I had forgotten about them, they were part of my black hole of memories. Of course it poured back, and I feel more awful than ever about it all.
So this is where I’m at–going back and forth from feeling SO much better to feeling UGH. These days I have to admit I’m mostly numb, which alarms me–am I depressed? I’m starting up speech therapy. I’ve got appointments with a cardiologist and neurologist later this month. I get blood tests every other day (hence, again, the track marks on my arms). I try to go to work once or twice a week. The rest of the time, I try to entertain myself, stare at the wall, whatever.
All the while, I wait to be able to write fiction again.
Update: Yes, I’m freaked out about needles. My first days home, in addition to blood tests, I had to have lovenox shots administered to me by my husband, twice a day. Those shots burn. I still have bruises all over my stomach from them, over a week later (hell, nearly 2 weeks later). Don’t even get me started on me taking medication for the mastitis (yes, somehow I managed to get a breast infection even though I am childless) I still have from before the stroke. Oh, and the antibiotics for the mastitis? Well, they had some interesting “side effects” that I had to deal with last week.