The longer I was sick, the harder it was to imagine being well. Remembering healthy Jenn was more imagination than memory because I was so far from it, in both time and space.
As I began to resign to a life of understanding simple ideas only after a replay, I pulled away from my family and friends. Only one person believed that my brain symptoms were caused by my heart: my family doctor. Dr. Heart thought it had more to do with Fibro than anything.
So I thought that even if my heart was fixable, I would still be stupid.
I couldn’t write when I couldn’t connect one simple idea to another. The skill I had was gone; and my dream was out of reach. I was heartbroken.
At a certain point, after being lost in a story for a long time and finding no way to get my thoughts across, I realised that it was out of my control. I couldn’t write well enough to fake it with good editing. My brain just didn’t work the way it had before I was sick.
Unintentional-existential-crisis-mode kicked in. Who is a writer who can’t write? Useless.
Okay, if a wordless writer is useless, I reasoned, then I have to become someone else. My parents always told me that I could be whatever I want to be. Who did I want to be?
I didn’t want to be sick, but my world was defined by cardiomyopathy and Fibro. They were part of the new Jenn. I wasn’t sure if I could be more. And as I was trying to figure out my new life and my new mind, I couldn’t connect with the world.
Never mind the fact that I felt like I was living under water while my friends and family were living on land; change is hard for relationships. Ambiguity is worse. When there is nothing to confide in people, it’s hard to connect.
Phoebe: Want to go to a rock concert tonight?
Jenn: I don’t know.
Phoebe: Are you interested in rock climbing?
Jenn: I don’t know.
I was so focused on making a new life for myself, I never imagined that I would wake up in the hospital one day pretty much back to normal. My mind couldn’t dream up a story with an ending like that.