Managing my emotions

7 Dec 2016

The more I delve into my neurological difficulties the more I could become demoralised. There is no doubt I got a raw deal.

Since all feelings, emotions and dreams stem from the Cerebral Cortex and mine is extensively damaged I can’t feel or tap into my emotions, without having to find another way to do it. I tend to have to work with my intuition and that helps me understand what is being presented, and that helps me work through the emotional process.

Because my brain doesn’t process feelings in the normal way, I struggle to control emotions like fear, without having to talk myself through the fear I feel. Even then it doesn’t work, because the part of the brain that should help me control and manage those feelings doesn’t work, so I’m on my own until the issue corrects itself, or I find another way through.

I know how fear makes me feel, but unless I find a way to manage and control that fear, the fear takes control of my every waking thought. That would explain why as a child once I struggled with bad thoughts, I couldn’t shift those thoughts, no matter how hard I tried. Although my mum tried to encourage me around that particular issue, it never worked.

The sad reality is that where family could have helped with my issues, particularly my parents, I was left to work things out on my own. Looking back at my life, I’m not sure what point there was to it all. Had questions been asked, my parents would have known why I struggled to take away things like bad thoughts. I still struggle today.

I think the part I struggled with the most now is having been misunderstood because of a lack of ignorance, instead of having the help to try to find out what all my issues were. What I’m doing now with the Diary, could have been worked through by others, it isn’t difficult; it just needs a little know how and a lot of patience.

The answers are out there, something I have proved. In my next Cerebral Palsy blog, I will write about why and how my dreams are also affected.

6 Responses to “Managing my emotions”

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  1. Randy 07. Dec, 2016 at 8:08 pm #

    Yes, you definitely got a raw deal all the way around. I have done quite a bit of reading about brain injuries for many reasons. One was to learn about my daughter’s condition and the other wondering what I may be dealing with as far as a TBI. It would explain a lot as to how much difficulty she has, with being so sensitive and dealing with a lot of serious issues.

    She seems to get easily overwhelmed, which is probably why she doesn’t like dealing with a lot of chaos. I grew up in the middle of a tornado as far as chaos goes, so it doesn’t faze me as much as it would other people. I’m guessing you have the same difficulties as my daughter in dealing with your feelings.

    I just love how people will say things like, think happy thoughts, when they have no idea what it’s like. It sounds like you don’t have any of the normal emotional filters that people do, because of your brain injury. Kind of hard to be able to manage your emotions when you’re not even sure of what they are to begin with.

    There are many times when I don’t even know what I’m feeling, because at a certain point I end up dissociating so I’m not feeling anything. This is a great survival skill but doesn’t really work for living.

    I have also had quite a few head injuries in my life between a girl trying to crush my skull, getting beaten up by bullies and car accidents. Most of them weren’t followed up by any medical care so who knows what’s going on between my ears.

    Both of us fell through the cracks between the parents we had and the times we lived in. People didn’t talk about a lot of things like they do now, especially parents who had children who were different. They seemed to take it personally and be ashamed when it wasn’t something that was their fault.

    I even struggled with that issue myself about my daughter, but I didn’t let it stop me from making sure she got the help she needed. Things are just so different now compared to 50 years ago, which is fantastic but there is still a long ways to go.

    There are still so many stigmas that need to be overcome, mostly by talking about the issues rather than just pretending they don’t exist. I would really love to be at least some small part of this revolution.

    • Ilana 07. Dec, 2016 at 9:02 pm #

      Thanks Randy. Yes, you’re interpretation of my emotions are spot on. It’s a struggle sometimes deciphering everything.

      You’re absolutely right though, through other people’s insecurities and stigma, you’ve had the life you’ve had, but when it comes to any brain injury, it’s still important to learn everything we need to learn.

      I love that you’re helping your daughter where you could have abandoned her, given your own problems Randy, but you didn’t and that’s absolutely commendable.

      Disability does need to be spoken about, particularly in families. I’m not sure how many families have changed that since you and I were small, but at least we know we’re not alone and know how it should be done.

      Perhaps the jury’s out on this one, but if the shoe were on the other foot, others wouldn’t expect any less.

  2. Tim 08. Dec, 2016 at 6:23 am #

    Your emotions may be restless at times, but when life comes charging at you, you don’t sidestep. You come with humility and a calm determination; that’s managing emotions for you.

    • Ilana 08. Dec, 2016 at 6:41 am #

      In times of stress Tim I need to remember your comments, as they will help me stand back and put my feelings into a different thought process.

      I’ve never been able to do that in this way. Thank you.

  3. Brad 08. Dec, 2016 at 3:44 pm #

    I agree with Tim. You manage your emotions; albeit differently to others and you just know how good you are at it.

    • Ilana 08. Dec, 2016 at 4:00 pm #

      Thank you. I think I do very well everything considered; but brain damage will always change the status quo. I’m comfortable in my own skin, not so easy when it comes to fitting in to other people’s version of me.

      I feel there is still little tolerance and understanding around those who are different and others expecting us to fit in.

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