Getting the Point Across

Communication Issues
[x]  Trouble being understood – check
[x]  Trouble understanding – check
[x]  Trouble finding words – check
[x]  Trouble communicating in generalcheck

Yes, that’s been the story of my life for the past 2+ weeks. Seriously.

And now that the project has finished (mostly – there are still a few outstanding items to take care of), I can get back to my life as I once knew it. I can catch up on all the little tasks that I had to push to the side, and I can get back to my daily breathing, sitting, and exercise. I’ve missed it. I really need it.

More than anything, I just want to put the past three weeks behind me. It has been unbelievably hard on me, and now that I’m out of the woods with the workload, I’m starting to feel more of the effects. When I’m in the thick of things, I tend to be so focused on what’s in front of me, that I can’t even tell how hard I’m working, or how hard things are for me.

But these past three weeks have been killer. Especially due to my communication issues.

Not being able to understand what people were saying to me… Not feeling like others were understanding what I was saying… Getting ideas scrambled, not finding the right words, not being able to communicate effectively, period. I know that there were others on the project who were not making much of an attempt to try to understand, but that doesn’t change that feeling I had of being in a sort of bubble where the right words weren’t getting out and the right meanings weren’t getting in.

As I said, in the thick of things, I was just so focused on getting it all done, that I didn’t let myself dwell too much on this. If I had, I’m not sure how I would have gotten it all done. I had to block that out and just keep going. But looking back, it was such a blur, such a confusing, frustrating, confounding blur. And I miss my old ability to piece things together quickly and smoothly. I miss having the old feeling of being sure of what I was saying and hearing and understanding — even if I wasn’t always really “with it”, at least I had a sense of being there.

Now…? That sense is sorta kinda gone. Especially in times of intense stress. And although I don’t like to think about it, I can’t seem to escape this feeling that I’m walking around in a kind of a daze much of the time — doing my best to keep up as best I can, but often struggling to understand and feel like I’m being understood… even when I’m not fully aware of it.

This is one of the hardest things about TBI — the communication difficulties, the thinking difficulties, that leave me feeling like I’m usually missing at least a part of what’s going on. Maybe I’ve never been 100% aware of everything going on, but times like this it feels even worse.

It’s probably because I’m so damned tired. Exhausted, really. I feel a lot better, when I’m rested, but even then, I often feel as though a few of the jigsaw puzzle pieces have dropped off the table while I’m putting the puzzle together, and I won’t realize I’ve dropped them till I almost get the whole picture built, then realize there’s something missing.

Well, I suppose everyone has this. Maybe I’m lucky, because I realize it.

But tonight, I’m not feeling very lucky in that regard.

Just tired. Glad to be done with the project, but really, really tired.

Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

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