Professor & patients' paper on the solvable biological challenge of ME/CFS: reader-friendly version
Simon McGrath provides a patient-friendly version of a peer-reviewed paper which highlights some of the most promising biomedical research on ME/CFS ...
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Shutdown

Discussion in 'Cognition' started by Joycie, Jan 27, 2018.

  1. Joycie

    Joycie

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    I don’t know what this is, or what it would be classified as, but as I’ve got it today it brought it to mind.

    If something crops up that I really have to do, I go into a sort of shutdown. The more my mind is telling me to get off my backside and make a start, or do whatever it is, my body kind of freezes and I can’t do it. As time runs out for me to do whatever it is, my mind is going into overdrive, panicking to do it, but my body refuses.

    Is this part of an anxiety disorder or part of CFS/ME, or something totally unrelated.

    Does anyone else have anything like this?
     
    Runner5, pattismith and BadBadBear like this.
  2. geraldt52

    geraldt52 Senior Member

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    I believe it is both, and beyond that I think that it is common to nearly all "chronic" illness. When one is running near their limit under just the ordinary circumstances of life, any addition obstacles appear larger than they really might be.

    I have a terrible time making small, routine decisions that I once made almost without thought. I have to remind myself often that all things get done by starting them, in however small a way, and then proceeding as one is able. I'm sure the pyramids seemed an overwhelming task, but over time...
     
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  3. Joycie

    Joycie

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    Thanks for your reply, Gerald.

    This is something I’ve had now for three years, since I went through a bad time at work. It’s like I become frozen to the spot if something must be done.

    Another analogy is like there’s two of me, having a battle of wills. The rational side of me is battling with the physical side of me, and the rational side of me can’t override this other side that refuses to budge and do what is needed. A bit like the proverbial ostrich, only one who’s (whose? I’ve gone word blind!) head is stuck in the sand.

    You are quite right. Things get done by starting them, I have found that’s true, too. Most times, I can switch off, and start them, until, at least, the fatigue sets in. It’s just that sometimes, some of those things seem totally overwhelming to my mind. :(
     
  4. Runner5

    Runner5 Senior Member

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    PNW
    Absolutely describes me perfectly.

    Perplexed I have tried to quantify it a little for myself. I think it's part of my brain is actually sleeping and not awake. Part of me is like -- "YO, YOU HAVE GOT TO MOVE GIRL, YOU HAVE GOT TO DO THIS!! GO GO GO!!! PLEASE!!!!!" It's frantic and trapped inside pounding against a glass wall. No dice. There is a creative part of the brain that is spontaneous and colorful that makes suggestions - it talks to us all the time like, "hey pick up the trash on the floor, did you remember to call the doctor? You look good today maybe do your hair in a new way, we could probably put up decorations." But when it sleeps this hard - it doesn't do anything. It is too dormant to even feel upset about stuff. I'm in a grey emotional scape, and as an artist that is beyond weird for me. I've relied my entire life on my creative brain and most of the time I can't access it anymore.

    The part of my brain that is awake sometimes thinks of stuff, bless it's heart, it kinda sorta tries like 'we have decorations, you should put them up.' Mmmh hmm. Then I sit there and I don't do it.

    I have a meal plan on account I can't plan jack anymore. When I do Yoga I want to do the same Yoga everyday, I can't handle different routines in the Yoga. I've tried to adapt to this but it really really bothers me. I want to do the same thing the same way every single day -- mostly sit. Reading becomes too much. Most television is too much.

    Last year I had 3 weeks of remission where my illness was gone. I started to think about going back to work, I cleaned my house, Could think clearly, I was so relieved, 'that's finally over' --- and then I woke up, and it was back.

    The dissapointment and the pain of waking up sick all over again - shattering.

    Sometimes I feel like my brain is an engine that is trying to start but it just sits there making that 'bad starter' noise you know, it doesn't click on over. I don't think my whole brain is bad, or everything is wrecked .... but something is just off and it's off just enough that nothing is working right.

    Since I've been ill, been trying to eat right, was Vegan for awhile - learned to like all kinds of foods I would never normally eat - make my tea with fresh ginger in it, have a daily Kombucha, Yoga. I do fasting twice a week. And what is wild is my husband showed me a side by side photo of myself from about 8 years ago and now -- Wow. I look like a different person. I look a million times healthier than I used to. My skin, my hair, posture - gosh everything is better, healthy food does work it turns out - I thought I just spent the time and money for nothing. So how in the crap do I convince people I'm sick now? I don't look it. Meanwhile my old pops in his 70's with the bad diabetes has more energy than I do. He has severe anemia, a blood issue, bad heart, wonky kidneys -- and gets more done. His engine still works, I'm stalled out.

    But you know, I gotta have hope. I'll keep praying and try to rehab, it's about all I can do.
     
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  5. Joycie

    Joycie

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    Bless you, Runner5! Yes, that’s it exactly!

    I’ve been thinking it’s just me, and that I’ve lost the plot. “It’s frantic and trapped inside pounding against a glass wall” is a perfect description of how I feel. The more urgent the job, the more frantic that pounding becomes.

    I had a phone call from my estate agents this morning. Someone wants to view my Lodge, which has been on the market for a while. The place is jammed with stuff (we moved here temporarily, while we work on a house not far away) and it’s thick with dust. I haven’t been able to do housework for months! This is why I’ve gone into shutdown today, obviously I need to sort the place out by Wednesday and so I’ve gone into mental battle mode. No doubt my other half will sort the problem out, but I feel bad then, because he’s working so hard on the place we’re going to.

    I get this if I have an appointment to keep, or even to meet a friend if I haven’t seen them for a while. I end up cancelling at the last minute if I can get away with it. The internal battle is so great, I have trouble describing it, well, in fact, this is the first time. Words don’t seem to be enough to describe it.

    You seem to have focused on the right stuff though, with your diet and yoga and stuff. You’ve given me hope. I look terrible, bags under my eyes and my hair is falling out. Between me and the dog, the carpet is a trip hazard with all the hair! Blimey, sounds like I’m so lazy!

    Thank you, Runner5 :bouquet:
     
    Runner5 likes this.
  6. 5150

    5150 Senior Member

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    I need to go to the DMV , take the written test, then take the road test. I am paralyzed.
    My brainfog and memory issues destroy confidence.
     
  7. Joycie

    Joycie

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    I can sympathise, 5150. I’d be paralysed as well!

    I started learning Welsh in September, a couple of hours once a week in the evening, and my partner would take me and pick me up to make it easy for me. I haven’t been to the class since the beginning of December. Every class exercise, working in two’s, seemed to be a master class in memory, and I’d forget things as soon as we did something. The more pressure there is, the worse it is. Plus the fatigue afterwards . . . Now I’m thinking I can’t go back. I was frozen to the spot last week, just thinking about going.

    Your driving test is even more intense, so you must have that frantic pounding that @Runner5 described so perfectly, quite badly. I can only wish you luck, and as @geraldt52 suggested, try and make that start, the first step out of the door and, hopefully, your other foot will follow.

    I wish I could follow my own advice . . .
     
    Runner5 likes this.
  8. IThinkImTurningJapanese

    IThinkImTurningJapanese Moderator

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    @Basilico Started an excellent thread on language learning,
    Learning a foreign language: the perfect CFS activity

    You may be able to find some tips there on getting around the memory issue. :D
     
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  9. Joycie

    Joycie

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    Many thanks, IThinkImTurningJapanese. I’ll check it out. I definitely need help! ;)

    I’ve tried keeping notes and writing stuff on bits of paper, in life generally, with limited success, but in a classroom setting, during an exercise, we have to regurgitate a dialogue that we have just studied, without looking at the notes. Hence, it becomes overwhelming.
     
  10. Joycie

    Joycie

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    @IThinkImTurningJapanese, I’m also a TESOL teacher of English, not that I do it, so I know a bit about different methodologies. :sleep:
     

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