I mentioned in a recent post that I have world class procrastination skills. If something’s a bit hard or unpleasant then why not put that fucker off for as long as you can?
But sometimes procrastinating about bigger stuff is not really fine at all.
Bills don’t go away if you ignore them (which doesn’t mean I haven’t given it a red hot go), and if you put off planning for the future indefinitely, the odds are that the future will probably reward your lack of interest by being pretty crap.
So these days when it comes to the big stuff I try to do the right thing. Take care of business. Be a grown up.
However before I could step up on to the podium and claim my adult mickey-badge there was one last big source of procrastination I had to face.
Now before you panic and think the worst, everything is more than likely to be just FINE.
Without going into too many morbid details I get very nasty hemi-plegic migraines. The effects are similar like a stroke – I lose feeling down one side of my body and when I try to talk all I can manage is slurred nonsense.
This, combined with a family history of strokes including a member of my immediate family, meant that it was prudent for me to have a couple of tests to check out what was going on in the old noggin.
Again no cause for alarm – just a look see to make sure there wasn’t anything they should be monitoring up there.
Anyway true to form I’d been procrastinating. For a few years actually. Yes, you can all shout at me in the comments.
But then about 2 weeks ago I got a bad one.
It scared me and worst of all it scared my boys. It made me think about what it would be like if I really got sick or incapacitated.
And suddenly it all became very clear. I looked into three pairs of big worried brown eyes and I realised I owed it to them to be as healthy as possible.
So last week I bit the bullet and went and had an MRI.
Somehow I managed to fight the initial surge of claustrophobia and not freak out like a cat in a sleeping bag. As I became acclimatised to the smooth white interior of the giant donut they put you in I thought, “This could actually be quite peaceful. I could even have a little nap!”
That was before the NOISE! Thuds and whirrs and beeps and shudders of all kinds assaulted my ears. If you can imagine a dance party inside a washing machine then you’re pretty close.
Anyway, I got the actual scans back straight away and because no-one told me not to I thought I’d take a peak.
Apparently this is what my brain looks like on the inside…
I have to say I found the experience of looking at my own brain deeply weird.
And also a little… creepy.
The sausage-like white masses, swirling shadows and wriggling black curlicues all looked vaguely spooky.
Like somewhere zombies would live.
So to stop myself freaking out completely I decided I’d try to create my own literal “mind-map” as a way of reclaiming the interior landscape of my brain.
I did some research and found out which sections of the brain controlled certain functions, and then added the various bits and pieces of my personality where I thought they’d fit in.
I also changed the colour scheme. I decided gelato-inspired pastels were much cheerier than misty grey and fathomless black.
Here is the final result…
Much livelier don’t you think?
And here is some info about who’s in who
in the zoo in my brain…
In charge of thinking, processing, logic, emotions and getting shit done. This is where “I” live – my personality which is represented by the sane and polite looking lady in the blue shirt. The Sensible thoughts also live in this area since they are generally behind any attempts to “get shit done”.
No I don’t know what the sparrow is doing in there but I must say I’m not really surprised.
The Cerebellum and Brain Stem
The are in charge of fine motor sills and also of the unconscious processes like breathing, heart beat etc. These are the shift-workers of the brain, doing the night shift to keep the show running after the rest of the mind has clocked off. Doing the vital things that we take for granted.
The Cerebellum is also in charge of fine motor skills, which for me means speed texting and getting tiny splinters out of chubby little feet.
Receives and sends signals. Like a satellite dish only smaller. Does not pick up Foxtel which is probably for the best as I suspect I would immediately fall into suspended animation, while mentally catching up on all the Game of Thrones episodes I am yet to see.
The Pituitary Gland
Ruler of hormones which are in turn in charge of telling bits of the body to do certain things at certain times. They are the winged messengers of the brain, only occasionally becoming the “mad banshees” of the brain for women at certain times of the month.
I don’t really know what they do for you fellas except make you hairy and horny.
Maybe they are the “70’s Porn Stars” of the brain for you?
This area could literally be re-named “The Ministry for Love & War”, as both love and aggression originate here.
You will also notice that Ms Bad Ass likes to hang out in this area as well, as she is usually present when I a) fly of the handle and lose my temper or b) get that loving feeling (if you know what I mean ;))
This is the main area that our memories are stored. A chest containing all my history and the events that have made me who I am. As you can see they are stored in an old style locked chest, representing that there are some things you can’t “back-up” on an external drive.
There’s only one creepy creature that I had to include – The Defeaters.
Similar to Harry Potter’s Dementors (although obviously not trademarked to JK Rowling!) The Defeaters are the doubts, the second guesses and self-defeating thoughts that hold me back and occasionally paralyse me into total inertia.
I wish they didn’t exist but unfortunately there are the odd few lurking towards the back of my mind. They are prolific breeders though, and require constant vigilance to ensure they don’t multiply out of all control.
My never-fail solutions to kick their ass when I feel them starting to gain a foothold in my thoughts?
Spend time talking with and listening to my boys. Their imagination, humour and excitement about the world and all it’s possibilities is so infectious that The Defeaters literally shrivel up and die in the bright light of their optimism.
Anyway, I’m going back to the doctor this week to get the scans decoded.
I only procrastinated about it for a few days so that’s not too bad relatively speaking. The mental image of three pairs of big brown eyes looking at me while I was prostrate on the couch is proving to be all the motivation I need.
And if he finds out what the sparrow is doing in there I’ll let you know 😉