Yesterday afternoon, I drove Daniel over to Sports Authority to get him some new shoes. Half way there:
Daniel: Mom, your driving is kind of off today.
Me: I know. I’m a little off today. I feel weird, like I’m not really here, like everything is just a dream.
Daniel, as he braces his feet against the floorboards: That’s kind of scary.
Me: Yes. It is.
If I had known just how off I really was, I wouldn’t have driven. But, sometimes, you don’t know until you’re out in the world, trying to navigate it. And, the brain fog from my fibromyalgia hasn’t been this bad in a long time. In September of 2014, my naturopath started me on Ceriva (a supplement that modulates the metabolism of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine) and a blend of adaptogenic herbs. Together, these supplements banished the worst of my brain fog and mental fatigue. I had such a long stretch of mental clarity that I felt like the old name of my blog – Notes From the Fog – no longer fit. I felt like a somewhat normal person! Until now. Now I’m back to feeling foggy, slow-witted and disconnected, from the world, from other people, from myself. I’m back to not being able to process things in my peripheral vision. To having super-slow reflexes that make me feel like I’m trying to move -and think- underwater. Back to not being able to process what anyone is saying if the TV is on in the background. To feeling absolutely worthless.
It’s very disappointing to get better and think you’ve got things figured out and then have a major relapse like this. I really thought I was done with being this out of it. And when I think of the word I chose for this year – focus – I am overwhelmed with a sense of hopelessness. With brain fog there can be no focus. One minute I can be at the sink doing the dishes and the next I’m at my computer with no memory of what thought prompted me to quit what I was doing and walk to another room. Fog is a focus killer.
While my little word for the year is probably completely out of reach right now, the phrase I chose for my planner for the week is not.
I will never give up my quest for focus and mental clarity. I will get it back. Somehow, some way, focus will be mine.