Monday, September 24, 2012

I Can't Do Two Things At Once

I sit here limp and panting. My nerves are ramped up and over-stimulated. There is a slightly frantic undercurrent in the air and as I look around the room waves of energy snap back at me. You are never gonna believe the grand old party I had getting here! This is what happened. I am in the process of organizing every darn scrap of paper I've been carrying around and collecting since I first filed a tax return in 1992. It's a lot. Last night I started the job and today sat for four hours in front of the TV sorting more scraps of tree pulp than anyone should look at in a day. It's hard work, trying to decide what to keep, shred, trash or do something about. Well as I am working I can feel my back start to ache and muscles begin to tense up. But I keep going. The longer I work and the more uncomfortable I become the more my nerves buzz to the point I suddenly cannot make a decision and my concentration simply will not split. Sensory meltdown is blowing trumpets at the gate to hearken it's arrival! 

I get up for some water and while I am standing at the kitchen sink the TV is blaring. My mind is stuffed full of insurance policies and car registrations and past employment records, the crap I have been looking at for the last four hours. Water is pouring from the sink into the pitcher. The ceiling fan is whirling. Then my husband asks me a question. And that's when it happens. EXPLODE! "Don't ask me a question! I cannot do four things at once my brain is melting!" I scream. "The TV is one," I yell and point at Elvira on Oddities tying a necklace of human teeth around her neck. "The water is two. The fan is three and now you want me to listen to you, think about what you are saying and then give a coherent answer? That's five!" I holler at the dear guy who just wanted to know where he could put some stuff in the office closet.

Yes quite a sensory meltdown party I had. It's nuts. I don't know many people who understand what that is like, other than my Fibro friends. I get the jokes, the wait until you are my age snickers when I complain about it, and it takes a lot to not grab the person into a vice-gripped headlock and give them a nugie! It's not the same, no not at all, to darn near have an anxiety attack over making a stupid decision like if I should defrost the chicken or ground turkey for tomorrow night's dinner. But people don't get it. How, in this day and age, can a healthy and productive member of society comprehend all it takes to truly filter out the barrage of things that are happening at any given moment? Things they ignore or don't think about are like an individual celebration all on its own to us. So there you have it, I was sorting paperwork and watching TV and the sedate environment of my living room sent me into a spiral of sensory overdrive. The home that houses two adults and two small dogs. Jeez, can you even imagine how much fun I would have on a street corner in New York City?

Thanks for joining,


  1. I know that feeling rather well!!!! I am not a good multitasker. Not one bit. Good luck with the paper shuffle!!!


  2. My family just don't get it when I ask them to turn the TV down especially on the adds. I feel this way often but had never really analysed it. This has helped. Thanks. oh and don't get me started on the smells! I can't stand pumping petrol on the perfume department.

  3. Oh mylanta girl. I had a crying jag yesterday at the mere idea of activities I wanted to do next month. I was in a cotton headed fog, had pushed myself on a walk anyway, had dinner with my family, with the darn tv on, and the notion of even deciding what to do for the evening sent me into a meltdown. So nice to be reminded I am not alone in this. Sensory overload is s bitch of epic proportions.