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What is my reference?

February 4, 2008

This morning I went to see my GP to brief him on the status of the checks in the hospital. We had a long chat on what this is doing to me and I explained to him my feeling of being lost. Lost as in having no honest feelings or at least no feelings that I can trust. Until now I knew I could trust myself and my feelings but after the experience of Thursday last week I’m not so sure: during the Neuro-Psychological tests I became almost uncontrollably angry when I was unable to perform certain tasks. I used to be my own unwavering observation point, my reference point. In the new situation this reference point is changing. I need a new reference point to see the change that is taking place in myself but that reference can’t be me. It is an unnerving thought.

I know that the Glioma has spread to the frontal lobe, the part of the brain where (according to the Neuro-Psychologist) not only emotion resides but also the ability to control that emotion. My wife confirmed that my fuse has become shorter (it was short to start with) since the seizure. I notice this myself. Sudden flares of anger for no reason at all quickly followed by feelings of intense remorse and shame. Something similar may go on in other functional areas of the brain. In which way and to what extend are flaws in my character and my upbringing magnified by this tumor? This too is an unnerving thought.

This afternoon we had an appointment with the Psychologist. She was very curious to know how things went with the fMRI last Friday. We discussed all details and she asked me whether the fear factor had changed (during a previous meeting set at 11 on a scale from 1 to 10). I hadn’t asked myself the same question yet so was quite surprised that it felt like a 9 to me now. People you can trust, finding solutions for fear increasing factors and Systematic Desensitization do actually help. A comforting thought! 

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