It all started when I referred to the Jaws of Life as the Jaws of Death, after witnessing a car accident two weeks ago with Stephen. We were on our way to pick Joshua up from work and the little kids were at home with Maggie (our twenty year old). Two cars hit right in front of us at an intersection, and then one spun around and hit a truck next to us. I looked for movement in the car that had spun but I saw none. The person may have died. It was a very jarring experience and I haven’t had anything like that happen before. I don’t feel emotional about it now but at the time, I was completely stunned and overwhelmed. I cried, and it takes a lot for me to cry.
And now I am having trouble speaking. I can’t recall words easily anymore which often makes me stop in the middle of a sentence and just sit there until the other person (usually my daughter, Maggie) chimes in, or I go a different direction with the conversation. My wires seem to be crossing in my mind all the time. I feel it even when I am not speaking or writing.
I have a hard time typing, too, but I am able to backspace (see? I wanted to say “backtype” just then but that isn’t even a word to my knowledge, so I had to sit there and let it come to me). It isn’t so obvious when I type because I can fix my errors. Anyway, it’s tiresome for me to talk and write.
Here’s what I’ve found on the web that matches what’s going on:
With anomic aphasia, the affected individual has difficulty finding appropriate words, a condition known as anomia. Because of difficulty recalling appropriate vocabulary, the individual struggles to communicate both verbally and in writing. – source
I read that usually it’s a physical problem with the brain that can cause this (like a stroke, brain trauma, or infection) but that there are times when psychological trauma can do it, too.
Some examples from the last two weeks (they seem funny to read but I truly can’t control it so it’s concerning):
I told my husband that half of a hot dog was 50 cents instead of 50 calories.
I said something had happened on Tuesday instead of last February because they are the second day of the week and second month of the year.
I told my four year old to brush her face, and then to brush her cheek, because I couldn’t think of teeth.
I said I ought to write a tally about all these mistakes instead of saying a list or post.
When someone asked where something was, I said three different rooms’ names before being able to say the correct one.
I don’t know, maybe I should try CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) to process the car accident better (I thought I had but apparently not). I could also slow down while speaking but it will be a challenge, lol.
Have you ever had something like this?
UPDATE: It stopped within another few days (so, about two weeks after the accident). I spent time really processing it and talking through how I’d felt at the time and apparently that healed everything. 🙂