welcome to my brain

22 Feb

I had just gotten my learners permit. Finally, I was the one behind the wheel and my mom was in the passenger’s seat.

“Okay,” she said. “Why don’t we go to the mall?”

I agreed and backed out of the driveway onto the road. I pulled up to the stop sign and waited.

“Which way?” I asked.

My mom was more than a little surprised by my question, and, to be honest, I was too. I’d grown up in that town my entire life and had been down the roads by the mall thousands upon thousands of times, yet I hadn’t a fuzzy clue in my head about which way I should turn to get there.

The flood gates opened after that. Every time I got behind the wheel it was apparent I had no idea where to go. Even places we had driven to daily now baffled me. I was perpetually lost in space, and it was finally starting to show.

People were shocked. I received comments on how I was making women look bad. I stressed every time I had to get somewhere.

I didn’t understand it, and it was hard for me to explain at first, but I felt unable to store spacial information in my brain. It just would not stick.

I have other weird tendencies. When reading numbers out loud I often switch the digits around. I have to pause and fight to say them in the right order because it is always easier for me to flop them. I’m still working on remembering my phone number, and it’s been close to a year since I received it. I’ve never memorized my multiplication table, and I have a hard time adding unless I use my fingers. I stress about playing games where I have to add up my score at the end, and strategic games have always been a nightmare for me. Chess is terrible because I can never seem to remember what my pieces are doing or what my goal is. I feel like I’m constantly loosing information that I’m trying to hold onto. The timeline in my head is a mess. People ask me simple questions like “When did you move?”, and I am clueless. What month is it again? Oh, how I hate writing checks for that reason! What’s the date? And please throw the month in too…and the year! I also stress about having to introduce people because in those situations I will even forget the names of extended family members.

It’s a messy brain to live with, but I’ve grown to accept it and even love it. It embarrasses me sometimes, but there are plus sides too. Honest.

I love language and writing. Words have a way of wrapping me up inside of them. Words like alfresco. Man, what a great word! And why do people struggle in knowing when to use well instead of good? Now that’s an area my mind does well in ;-). I dream up stories without even trying, and I love to create. I HAVE to create. My creative-thinking process seems like its constantly turning as my mind wanders from concept to concept. In school I found that I thrived learning about anatomy and the human body. Words like sternoclavicular joint and medial malleolus made perfect sense to me and stuck in my mind easily. 206 bones in the human body? It was like playtime getting to memorize each and every one of them. Throw in joints and muscles, and it was a party.

Yeah, I forget what year I’m in, but I can tell my tarsals from my carpals and I know exactly where my xyphoid process is. Helpful, I know.

With a brain like mine, it sure is nice to have some answers just for sake of understanding what the heck is going on. As it turns out, I’m not alone.

I’m going to jump out on a limb here and issue a self-diagnosis of Dyscalculia. I happened across some information about it, and it opened my eyes to the contents of my brain. Dyscalculia is also referred to as Math Dyslexia, and it’s gaining more and more recognition from the medical world. Not that the condition needs fixing or anything like that. Just acceptance and understanding.

Click here for more information if you find yourself intrigued.

Did I mention that my husband is a math-loving, map-making geographer? Yeah, we’re cute like that.

*******

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3 Responses to “welcome to my brain”

  1. humbleadoration February 22, 2012 at 4:08 pm #

    I’m so glad we don’t have to be good at everything! I think that Jason might also have dyscalculia. Numbers just don’t have a place in his brain. It’s hard for me to be understanding because numbers are so easy for me, but we’re learning to compensate as a couple.

  2. clayanddust February 22, 2012 at 4:21 pm #

    So you two are cute that that too! I love when opposites attract 🙂

  3. bjpramann February 22, 2012 at 5:51 pm #

    Have I ever told you your post are refreshing? They are, I never know what to expect and I always love it.

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