My problematic brain and I are back from the gallows. Kinda sorta. More or less. I did survive my second EEG. Unlike with the first one, I experienced nothing—no colored lights in my head, no qi sensations in my legs. I didn’t even end up with “stigmata,” which is how I thought of the long-lasting marks on my forehead where the electrodes had been during the first EEG.
At the end of the first EEG, I’d asked to do some qigong while still hooked up. However, my neurologist told me afterwards that the qigong had just created a lot of muscle artifact. So I was surprised when the technician volunteered that I could do some this time, too. When she told me to start, I tried moving internal energy first without moving my hands, and then with minimal movement of my hands, holding them above my dantian beneath the sheet. Very little happened. Boring, boring, boring. I had shorted myself on sleep per instructions for the test, and now I just wanted to go home and take a nap.
The next day I went up to Canada to take care of my grandkids on two days when they had no school but their parents had work. I wasn’t expecting test results any time soon, because I knew my neurologist was on leave. But as I was getting ready to leave my son’s house, I got an email from the neurologist saying that the second EEG looked pretty much like the first one “with possible if not probable abnormalities suggestive of seizure.” He said both EEGs were “rather challenging,” although I’m not sure whether he meant for him or for me.
Again he offered medication. Again every fiber of my being rebelled at the notion of putting my brain in a chemical straightjacket when it’s possible that, despite its kinky behavior when hooked up to electrodes, I may never have another spell.
I had been mightily upset when I went to the gallows and moderately upset while awaiting the results from what I had thought was a ho-hum test. Now I was mightily upset again.
I am working to regain a more positive or at least a more reasonable perspective. I do not actually see a neurologist for a month—a new one, for a second opinion, per the suggestion of the one who is on-leave-except-for-email—and I am seeking a one-on-one appointment with my qigong teacher. I am also reading books, doing research online, continuing my taiji and qigong practices, starting a seated meditation practice and taking walks whenever possible. (Good thing I don’t mind rain.)
What has been interesting, and more often heartening than not, has been the way my here-and-there reading keeps running me smack into articles that feel to be the perfect thing for me to be reading at that very moment in time. (Yes, I gagged as I wrote that. I don’t really believe in things like “synchronicity” and “gifts from the universe.”) Continue reading