Yesterday was one of those days, do something and get so terribly exhausted I had to stop and rest. I’d been on the computer, I swore I hadn’t done anything out of the ordinary. My brain said we’re done. I thought I was going to fall asleep at the keyboard.
I got my sleep mask, settled in to bed with my kitty Tux, when Richard came in. We had planned on visiting friends of his who were holding a garage sale and keep them company. I told him I had to rest, we could go in a little bit, but if he wanted to go now, go.
He went. I didn’t give myself a thought about not being able to go, that sort of disappointment, the missing out on something, is just part of the deal with TBI.
It was 1:45 when he left. I fell asleep immediately (rare). At 2:05 I was scared awake by someone’s yell. My heart was racing! It sounded awful close so I looked out my window, saw nothing, looked out toward the neighbor’s house thinking either my horse got out, or worse, maybe the older neighbor had a heart attack. Seeing nothing in their direction I went into the bathroom to look out the front of the house.
There was a truck parked right in front, I knew it would be someone to see Richard, most people go to the front door so I assumed they’d knocked and no answer, they would leave. As I turned away from the window there was a knock at our kitchen door which startled me. “Oh, it’s Richard’s friend,” I thought, as I went to the door.
Oh no – it wasn’t the kind man I’d met before, this is a guy who came to our garage sale a couple of weeks ago, had the audacity to tell Richard his prices were too high, left, then came back the following day (Sunday) when we were NOT having the sale. I thought it was downright disrespectful back then to come on to someone else’s property when clearly we’re not having the sale! Richard reluctantly went out, I was angry and would have nothing to do with him.
Now it was my turn. He said he thought we were having our sale again today, that my husband said we’d be having one in two weeks. I said no, that Richard said we’d be having one in a couple of weeks, the date wasn’t set, there were no signs at the street and no ad in the paper. He said he didn’t know there was an ad last time (I didn’t tell him there had been, odd comment, I thought.)
At any rate, he needed to get some other things and return what he couldn’t use. I said I didn’t know if Richard has any sort of money back policy (who in the heck does at a yard sale???!!) and told him to come back in a few hours.
I don’t usually wake up well under normal circumstances, I was clearly irritated by this man and was not going to take any crap. Even though I strongly suspected a Head Injury when he was first at our yard sale, now was not the time for compassion or asking any personal questions!
He turned to leave saying he didn’t mean to bother me (seriously?! That’s hilarious!) I closed the door and went back to my bedroom. Couldn’t settle down so called Richard and told him our favorite guy from the yard sale had stopped by. I wasn’t sure I was heard, he told me his friends got a new puppy. The phone lost its signal and he called back asking if I was okay, he then jokingly asked his friend if he had any of the items for sale I’d sold him. In that moment I knew I was alone again to reason this out, then came the tears…
There are a lot of little subtleties with Brain Injury and not recognizing this person who I thought was someone else is one of those little things that can and sometimes does, in the long run, put a Brain Injured person at risk. (The formal name for not remembering faces I think is called Face Blindness, something I’d never known before TBI.)
That event freaked me out! Being able to think fast on my feet, figure things out as they’re happening is not something I do post-injury. It puts us at risk and the feeling of constantly being vulnerable and somewhat betrayed by one’s own brain, is unsettling, to put it mildly.