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Brain injury blog by survivor

Brain injury blog by survivor



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Brain injury blog by survivor

Brain injury blog by survivor



“Hold that thought…” no I can’t with a brain injury

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Amnesia and other memory issues are often associated with brain injury. Believe me, that’s frustrating enough, but I’m regularly losing my train of thought too. I don’t know if it shows in my writing, but I can completely forget what I was doing or talking about.

Where was I….. Oh yes

If I go to get something, say a sponge, it’s not unusual for me to have forgotten what I needed it for by the time I pick it up. Or I might not even make it that far; I might get in the room but have no idea what I came for. This scenario happens quite a lot as I often spill a little tea when carrying 2 mugs. It’s not a lot, and downstairs is a hard floor, so there’s no long term damage. But it still feels like bad manners to not clean up after myself. Instead it often waits until someone else observes the stain and comments on it.

I know you can set reminders for yourself for lots of activities, but it’s the impromptu ones that I can’t. Couple that with rubbish observation skills, and it can be a miracle that I get anything done.

It can even affect shopping and budgeting.

Like many people I don’t like to overpay for things, so I shop around. (Online. I hate going into actual shops, mostly because they’re full of other human beings who have their own agendas to worry about.) For example my Bengal, Dexter, can be a bit of an eating machine. Apparently it’s normal for them to have larger appetites than your regular moggie.  But he’s also fussy. There are so many brands of cat food that have been tried and rejected, it think it’s fair to label him a diva!  But he has settled on Sheba fish flakes pouches. They’re easy to get hold of, but when you have a guy like this it gets expensive. I call it his Leopard fuel (because Bengals come from the Asian Leopard.) As soon as he has eaten his pouch he’s off out to give the  squirrels havoc.

So to try to minimise the cost of owning a furry eating machine, I order his food online. Which is fine as long as I OBSERVE that his stocks are depleting, and THINK  to reorder it. So this went wrong this week, and I didn’t complete my order, because that thought went AWOL, and so I had to go to a physical retailer to make sure my mini Leopard didn’t starve. And I was shocked to find the same product is 75% more expensive now in stores when no special offers are on.  I know we need to support physical retailers, as they are shutting up shop fast due to poor sales and our online habits, but that’s too much of a difference! I opted for Whiskas, as he will just about accept as long as I make it only an occasional substitution.

It's hard to complete tasks when you keep losing your train of thought. If I don't do something with that thought quickly enough, my brain injury just files it in

It’s not lack of initiative or willing.

So if a brain injury survivor doesn’t do something, don’t assume they’re lazy. There can be intention, but it might not have hung along for registration.

Following your brain injury do you find it hard to hold a thought? What impact does it have on your day to day life?


12 replies on ““Hold that thought…” no I can’t with a brain injury”

Some of those things happen to people who haven’t had a TBI. When I hear that, it’s hard though because it happens more now that I’ve had one–even though it was a long time ago. Still, you’re not alone in forgetting what you were doing when you find yourself somewhere. “Where was I going? Why am I here? What was I going to do?”

One thing that can help in some circumstances is to allow yourself A LOT more time to do things, realizing that your memory isn’t what it used to be and you may have to back track. I wish I didn’t have to do that, but I do. It’s just become part of how I plan things each day.

Thanks Ellen that’s good advice. Maybe I get distracted or something so I need to remember to concentrate.

Hi I stumbled onto your account on pinterest when trying to find articles about fatigue after a stroke, as I still have it after 6 years .you are describing me exactly !i forget everything and i feel like maybe my friends and family think I’m doing it on purpose . Even with alarms, reminders, phone calls from others to remind me, if I don’t do something immediately I will forget it. I was supposed to ring the surgery to increase my medication about 2 months ago and i forget every time I’m reminded !it’s really frustrating isn’t it .thank you for your articles ,it’s nice (in a weird way) to know someone else is going through what I am ? xx

Hi Claire, I do think many of us feel that others don’t really believe what our symptoms are. Maybe that’s just us being paranoid, but I do think people struggle to understand. Anyway you are not alone, we are all on this journey together ?

I find that most will compare their forgetfulness to mine or comment. When I tell them about a certain situation, they will say you are not any different than me. Just the other day I walked into a room and couldn’t remember why I went in there and for what.
You see I just turned 50. My injury happened 3 years ago. So, many of my symptoms are minimized as menopause. This has been what I have experienced both personally with family and friends as well as the medical community

Ah yes, they think they are trying to make you feel better by saying what you are experiencing is just normal. But instead it just comes off as minimising your condition and makes you feel dismissed.

I am a brain injury survivor for over 43 years ago now, I’m now 46. I suffered a traumatic brain injury by falling from a top bedroom window and landing on concrete. I was not expected to survive, but i’m a survivor against all odds. Doctor’s advised my parent’s not to expect to much, she will be a vegetable for the rest of her life (pardon the expression). How wrong they were. It was my frontal lobe that suffered the most. I was only in hospital for about 3 week’s, with numerous hospital appointments in the follow up. I suffered post traumatic epilepsy till I was 15.

My schooling suffered tremendously, as I could not remember much. All teachers would say, is I must learn to speak up, I sat quietly in class. I did not know I was struggling, I was just doing my best and that’s all my I could do. I did not do very well in my exams, as you can imagine. I could not remember a thing due to my brain injury.

Every part of my life suffered due to my brain injury, I can’t go anywhere new on my own, as I suffer extreme anxiousness and not remembering my way there and back even with a sat nav. I can remember things if I do them over, and over again repetitiveness.

I never let any of my employers know until I went for rehabilitation in 2011, because to me I was “normal”. It wasn’t until I moved away from all family and stood on my own two feet that I actually did something about my brain injury. I tackled every part of my life, brain injury and abuse from my grandad at age 8, and from an uncle at age 15.

All my relationships have suffered until recently, because no one really believed me, because I look normal, talk normal. Ask me a few minutes later what we were talking about and I could not remember.

I have worked since I left school, but all full time jobs until last year. I really have pushed myself to the extreme, I suffered fatigue, brain fog, head aches, and much more. I have reduced my hours over the last year, and hopefully just reduced for the last time this week. Now will be working 18 hours as a care assistant, which I enjoy. I do use strategies at work that enable me to do my job, I carry a note pad, and use my phone as my memory for date, day.

I have been a fighter all my life and I continue to fight, I won’t let brain injury win over me!!!

Mandy your experience is heartbreaking on so many levels, but I love your spirit and determination in the face of adversity.

Thank you, I do feel a totally different person now having sorted my past out. Believe me I went through hell sorting everything out, wanting to end my life at one point, but me being me I overcome it. No one or anything will beat me, i’m a fighter.

Yes I find very frustrating, like today I went downstairs to get something up and down 3 times, the 4th time I put a note in my phone yes success!

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