We all have our challenges in life. I faced my hard one the other day. It happened once or twice before. Family stress, hormones, sickness, maybe the weather change – the perfect storm that puts me over my seizure threshold in a major way. A scary way. Not just the little ones that are an annoyance.
It was coming for days. I cried at every thing and I began to try to edit stress and uncertainty out of my life. Anyone that caused me stress and I could not depend on to stay calm at that moment I avoid. If there is someone who I’m unsure of I reach out to them wanting to make sure they are calm even if I am not. I want the world to stop for a few hours or a few days until I am physically able to deal with it again. Their angst, sometimes even words, feel like someone is scraping my inside with their fingernails. I know that this is the storm in the emotional part of my brain, but I can’t stop it.
The really difficult part is that when I have seizures my ability to communicate goes to hell and nothing that I say really makes sense. I feel the paralysis like vines crawling up my arms, I feel darkness descending from the top of my head and my visual world shrinking to a pin point. I feel it taking over the linguistic part of my brain until the only words that come out are “help me”. I come out of it confused, feeling lost, cold, crying and as if that sensitivity that was inside has migrated out to my skin. Everything that touches me hurts.
This happened with JJ once when my family was stressing me out and there were other triggers as well. Somehow he thought I wanted to “move our relationship forward”, then he thought that I wanted to have a baby before it was too late. That was so far out of my reality I didn’t even know how to answer. I thought he was crazy, but now I understand he just didn’t know what to think about my crazy. All I really wanted was a calm, kind friend who would reassure me that the rest of my life wouldn’t collapse when I checked out, that he wouldn’t cause me stress, that he would just be for a few days while I recovered.
This happened again this weekend. There were quite a few people that I avoided because I didn’t want drama. There was one person that I tried to avoid, because I thought I could see stress coming with him. He was confused at my behavior and began to assume the same things JJ did. “What do you feel about me, K?” he asked. I didn’t answer because it wasn’t about that at all. He must either be more emotionally aware than JJ or I did something better this time. I ranted and raved, I begged for help and he finally realized the answer was simple. I just needed a calm, kind presence for a bit. Nothing fancy, not professions of love, no questions, no solutions. He gave me exactly what I needed and I think his solution works well for many things, “Where would you like to go for dinner?” he asked very simply in the midst of my ranting. “Order in and a mindless movie.”
He must be reading my blog.
For anyone else who might read this and know someone who has seizures, don’t overreact. Remember that a reminder to take a bit more medication, some good food and a calm presence might be all they need.
My other challenge is to make the cookies for the food bank fundraiser. These are the others I am going to make and I’m going to add a bit of dried mango and dip the bottoms in dark chocolate. Yum.
- 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 5 1/2 cups flaked coconut
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line cookie sheets with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
- In a large bowl, stir together the flour, coconut and salt. Stir in the sweetened condensed milk and vanilla using your hands until well blended. Use an ice cream scoop to drop dough onto the prepared cookie sheets. Cookies should be about golf ball size.
- Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until coconut is toasted.