One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to brain damage and cerebral palsy. Each part of the brain that is damaged is unique to the individual, and that is the main reason why there is no research on cerebral palsy.
It is impossible to ascertain the exact symptoms each individual will have to face, and the medical profession’s brain scans are only able only to provide a general analysis of the likely effects arising from damage to a specific part of the brain.
Unravelling my own symptoms, I know that I have extensive damage to the frontal lobe, which includes the pre-frontal cortex. This controls planning, problem solving, selective attention, behaviour and emotions. Because my emotions are impaired I get to deal with a certain level of immaturity. I also have impairments in attention span and organisational ability, and I struggle with motivation. The damage to this part of my brain is the reason why I missed out on my milestones as a child.
I have problems with the rear part of the frontal lobe which controls motor function. Both the left and right parietal lobes contain the primary sensory cortex that controls sensation, such as touch. Where someone with cerebral palsy can be under-sensitive, I am over-sensitive. An associated area controls assessment of textures, size, weight and shape.
I have damage to the right parietal lobe, and I struggle with all these. The damage to the right parietal lobe also means I have spatial awareness difficulties, difficulty naming objects, trouble finding words when I’m speaking, and some difficulty in reading and writing. I struggle to navigate my way through recognition and am unable to feel certain emotions that other people take for granted. It is my intuition that helps me manage daily routines.
But piecing my symptoms together isn’t a problem for me. In a way I welcome it because it allows me to evaluate my life where I didn’t have that before. Understanding why I am as I am is long overdue. What I mind is having been judged, and still being judged for my shortcomings, with a lack of tolerance, empathy and understanding from others on what I deal with.