Stroke: Me



What’s going on? Why are my thoughts all so disjointed and hard to hang on to?

Am I standing up, sitting or lying? I think it’s important to know. Where I am can be worked out when that’s understood. There’s something important I must do right now. What was it? It is an urgent thing. It’s odd that I don’t know what though. Part of me is cold. I’m not sure what part. Is this something I should worry about? I don’t know. I don’t even know if it, whatever it is, is too hot or cold. I’m pretty sure it could get, or may even be dangerous right now but it’s so hard to organise myself. Why can’t I work anything out? There’s pain somewhere, pretty bad too. I really should do something about it soon. But first I need to think about things like sorting it out. Maybe I’ve been sitting too long – if I’m sitting that is. Am I? Is it important? What is it that’s causing all this urgency? I’m worried, scared even and don’t know why. This has gone on too long and it’s not like me to be like this. I need to do something about it. That’s right – sort it out. I’m usually really good at sorting things out but right now… What right now? I don’t know. There is something annoying or frightening … not sure what but I need to deal with it. Oh God why is everything so urgent?

I moved … was that me or was it something else? No, I’m not sure if I can move anything at all. How long have I been like this? Yes that was it: I need to know what’s happening because knowing is important. When you know things you can get jobs done. I can’t remember what I need to do but don’t think I’ve done anything for a while. You feel good when you get jobs done for people. That much I know. So that’s good. I’ve worked out that I know something. Why is everything so important, important things that I’m not doing? Something was worrying me, something that must be attended to. I wish I knew what it was. I’m exhausted and I don’t know why because I’m full of energy like fire. Is a bit of me on fire? No, I’d know that wouldn’t I? This is crap. I’m wasting time thinking about the wrong things because they’re not helping. I don’t know, I just don’t know.

I need to work out where I am. Get that right and everything else will fall into place. Everything is dark or weird blinding lights. Are my eyes open? Can I see anything? That’s a really good question but distracting me from something more important – what was that? Why am I failing all the time by getting distracted? Concentrate. Where am I? Am I standing on the stairs? What stairs? I can remember so many different staircases, well I can’t but I’m sure I could if I tried. Which one am I on? I don’t think I’m even on a staircase. For all I know I’m lying down. But why? There’s something I need to get done. All I need to do is sort things out. Like … like… What I really need to do is work out if I’m somewhere. Of course I’m somewhere, what a stupid idea. I can’t waste time having stupid ideas … there’s something important … really important and…

This is torture … how long has it been going on? Feels like forever because I can’t remember a before.

I’ve just had a really clever idea. What I need to work out is if I’m standing up or lying down. Get that worked out and… No, I’m not sure that’s what I should be worried about. What I need to do is know the things I should know. But where do I start?

What can I see or feel? I should be able to know. Either would be a start. I’d like to be able to concentrate on a single thing for…

I’m exhausted. Maybe this is all about that. Maybe I should be relaxed. But it’s so distressing. I’m fighting something. That … now that sounds important. I must fight it. One step at a time. The first … come on … what’s the most important thing? I think it’s probably… Where was I?

Start again.

What do I remember that’s not this? Do I know people … anyone? I must: I must! But not just at the moment … because there’s something. Something important…



Gary Bonn, 2018