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Stream of Consciousness: The Brain is a Funny Thing


The brain is a funny thing.

I live with Cerebral Palsy. A condition which I describe as part of my brain dying at birth. Cue my wonky leg syndrome. Cue the fact that I’ll always have non-existent balance. And cue the fact that my writing will always look like a three-year-old’s doodles. Cue the fact that I’m okay with that.

My brother lives with Autism. A condition which I describe as the Plumber being asked to wire-up the brain when the Electrician was off sick. Cue his atypical brain. Cue the fact that he likes the sensory feeling of shoelaces brushing against his palms. And cue the fact that he loves Teletubbies at the age of twenty-three. Cue the fact that I think he’s okay with that.

My mum lives with alcoholism. An addiction which I describe as a disease; blurring the line between reality and fantasy as the brain becomes increasingly addled. Cue the fact that she lives in her own toxic bubble. Cue the fact that she tells stories of how the dog high-fived her. And cue the fact that there’s only one reason for that black eye. Cue the fact that I don’t think she’s okay with that.

My dad lives with depression and anxiety. A condition which I describe as a chemical imbalance which turns the brain upside down. Cue the fact that he has a prescription for Happy Pills. Cue the fact that panic attacks occur at 3am. And cue the fact that smoking and alcohol are used to self-medicate. Cue the fact that he’s not said whether he’s okay with that.

As I was sitting in my nan’s garden, after a bizarre turn of events, I thought; “The brain is a funny thing!” We drank tea and ate bread and butter. She told me the spoons that have blossomed are her favourite colours. Then we discussed how she doesn’t know what that oddly shaped thing does on the roof. And we debated what time her husband (who was probably at the Strugglers) would be home for dinner.

My nan lives with dementia. a condition which I describe as a game of Kerplunk that nobody ever wins. Cue the fact that spoons don’t blossom, but flowers do. Cue the fact that the thing on her roof was the TV aerial. And cue the fact that her husband didn’t arrive for dinner because he died in 1992. Cue the fact that in time she’ll forget her memory is fading and she’ll be okay with that.

This is not a sob story. The brain is a funny thing. Everyone has struggles. Everyone makes the best of their situation. We all have tall tales combined with quirky stories. Cue the fact that I’m okay with that.

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