I am forgetful. I am not as patient as I once was. The other day, I screamed at a driver to get off her cell phone. Fortunately, she didn’t see me. I was shocked and ashamed of myself. I wanted to pull over and cry. I’ve had a few people call me nuts. Ouch. What happened to tact? Wait, I don’t have a lot of that either. Maybe I am a bit nuts.
Recently, I read about the prefrontal cortex (part of the brain). It’s got an amazing job. It regulates decision making. It’s the seat of abstract thought. It allows people to plan ahead and make strategies. It controls emotions. It makes good judgments. . . all when working well, of course. The prefrontal cortex is slow to develop and given as one of the chief reasons why smart teens may make such poor decisions. It has limits. In my case, it’s been overloaded trying to cope with the day-to-day that is my life. My prefrontal cortex is having a bit of a crisis.
On top of circumstances beyond my control, I’ve got a decrease in estrogen. Researchers used to believe that it affected the menopausal woman’s hippocampus. Now they find:
“The prefrontal cortex is critical for intact working memory and estrogen enhances performance on working memory tasks. In conclusion, this study provides preliminary evidence for executive dysfunction in untreated menopausal women as women with HRT outperformed women without HRT on tests requiring directed attention, inhibition of inappropriate responses, and cognitive set switching.” [Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11403979]
Which in lay person’s terms means, I am so screwed.
I didn’t plan on this. “Lord, what are you thinking?”
“Lord, this is about faith, surrender, acceptance, isn’t it?” The answer is a peaceful silence.
My God’s not much of a talker but then again, getting a word in edgewise with me, is no easy feat. So, I try listening. The clocks ticks off the seconds. I hear the soft rise and fall of my family’s voices as they enjoy a cooking show. I can’t hear their words but the tone is sweet. Soon their talk turns to the worm in Mescal. Funny how quickly their voices rise. I hear “Uuuuuuh,” then laughter.
Again, the ticking of the clock forces its way to the center of my awareness. “Lord, are you telling me to heed the passage of time?” In between ticks, I realize that even in these challenging times, my life can be full and sweet. Blessings are as abundant as sorrows. One highlights and illuminates the other and I see with fresh eyes, not confined by logic or reason. Mine is an exquisite kind of crazy. I’m one lucky woman. Sanity, is highly overrated. I’m sure of it.