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Old June 8th, 2012, 13:29
cal821 cal821 is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Canada
Posts: 477
Default "Widow Brain" A must read for the recently Widowed

I want to bring up in discussion a problem we widows/widowers face in the begining after our loss of our dear spouse... it is called "Widows Brain"

Widow’s brain” is a real thing. A living, breathing, thing. It affects all people who experience such a traumatic loss. It beats you down and leaves you helpless and confused during a time that leaves very little room for such things.

Several articles I had read define widow’s brain as “ side effect of grief caused by your brain trying to protect you from the pain. Unfortunately, it causes you to pretty much forget everything....

It is why we suddenly stop speaking mid-sentence-we can’t remember what we were talking about/saying. . . it is why we quizzically stare around a room-we have no clue what it is we came in the room for and often times don’t remember how we got there in the first place. . . basically, it’s grief-induced amnesia.”....

I’d say that’s pretty accurate. It’s the inability to make even the simplest of decisions; to remember a thought even from just 30 seconds ago. In the beginning I can’t tell you how many times I had walked into a room unable to remember why I went in there.

How many times I had opened my mouth to say something only to have absolutely no idea what it was I wanted to say. I had even walked away from my car in a parking lot while it was still running. Twice.

As if grief and loss wasn’t bad enough, “widow’s brain” leaves you feeling like you have almost no control over the pieces of your life that remain. " I used to be so organized.... So ready.... So on top of everything..... Is probably a common train of thought for all of us when this happens..

And probably the worst thing about “widow’s brain” – it prevents you from being able to recall your memories. Even the one’s you want to remember. I couldn't even tell you how many times I ended up in tears in the beginning because I couldn't remember what my wife used to call something, or what her reaction to a situation had been.

There were so many details about our life together that I simply could not remember, no matter how hard I try. And that sucked. Losing your spouse is difficult enough; why take away the widow’s ability to recall facets of their life together as well? It’s almost like the things that made “us”, “us”, are gone now too.

Have you ever felt like this or had this happen?

*** You stop mid sentence when you're talking to someone because:

1. you get side tracked by something such as:
a. background noise/happenings
b. your own thoughts
c. scattered emotions and feelings
d. all of the above, all at once

2. you completely forget what you were saying

3. you completely forget your entire point

4. you, even sometimes, forget what the conversation is even about.
And it's worse than just your normal "oh shoot I forgot what I was saying." Much worse...

You misplace pretty much every single thing you have at some point....
Again... this isn't your ordinary "I can't find what I'm looking for" situation. This is probably the number one thing that botheed me the most. I literally felt like I was losing my mind. I had misplaced my keys several times, I had 'lost (or misplaced, I don't know yet)' at my first checks, I misplaced my camera, that paper I was JUST looking at.... And the list goes ON AND ON AND ON!

And it's not JUST misplacing my things. Oh how I wished it was JUST misplacing a few things here and there.. No, it's misplacing them and then finding them in the most random and strange places.... Those kind of places that you go, "when did I even open that cabinet up?" "At some point in the future you will laugh at this about yourself believe me!!"

And what's worse? I had seriously horrible memory gaps. Again, like amnesia. Sometimes I could remember point A to point B... but point B to point C??.........
Don't even try to ask me what I was doing, where I was at, where that glass of water that I just had in my hand two seconds ago went.... Talking about my very first misplaced check - I honestly do not know what happened from the time I left the house to the time I arrived at my own home. can't recall a bit of it. Who knows the place that I went right after I got home. Who knows where I set down that check. Did I have it in my hand while walking home? Was it in my pocket? My wallet? My Jacket? I don't know.

I would sometimes walk into a room, or specifically the kitchen, look around and wonder why the heck I was there. In the kitchen example... I will be standing with the frige open... and then it's like I'd snap out of a 'dream-like-state' and wonder HOW the heck my feet just carried me from my position on the couch to the open refrigerator door. . It's like I was in a daze when it happens.

These things are VERY common that widows/ers do in the beginning ... and people who are grieving in general do. We glide through life... just try to sustain. It's often times a fog going day by day and sometimes in the beginning I didn't remember half of the things I did the previous day.

Hopefully this will help you who are suffering from " Widow's Brain " and understand this is a common theme for us.. But it will pass in time so don't be alarmed..........

I wish you hope & peace

Memory can only tell us what we were,
in the company of those we loved;
it cannot help us find what each of us, alone, must now become.
Yet no person is really alone;
those who live no more echo still within our thoughts and words,
and what they did has become woven into what we are.

I wish you peace and a level path on your journey...


Last edited by cal821 : June 8th, 2012 at 18:19.
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