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Thursday, April 13th, 2017 17:20
A conversation on twitter caught my eye today. In an exchange about how differently one person's brain works from another (in respect of reading whatever is in front of you, a subject I have things to say about but not here and now) [personal profile] julesjones (waves) mentioned being told "not everyone's brain works like yours". It's a subject I've thought about recently, after being told how my brain works, and how it's not like others'.
According to experts in these things, a childhood lived in fear affects how the brain develops. Your mind -arising from that configuation - is therefore not 'normal'. Now, 'normal' is not any one thing, it is a range, and anyone can be even an extreme outlier on that range and still be 'normal'. So it is hard to talk about this to other people, I've been struggling as I've tried to discuss it with friends, as the common response seems to be 'oh we all do that' or 'everyone does that'. And it is true. Everyone forgets things. Everyone has events within their experience that they have no memory of. To say - I forget things, or - more accurately - to say 'I don't remember' means more than 'I am forgetful' or even that I'm getting older. It was explained to me that so much of my experience has simply never been written into my memory. Not long-term. As a coping mechanism, a way to deal in the moment. It means - what does it mean? I've lived a life in a version of 'fight or flight'. It's been called 'fear mode' or 'danger mode' where every event is analysed in the same way and reacted to accordingly. My reactions to events are over-reactions, or under-reactions. The only difference I can see these days is now that I know it I can consider each event or ask, a daughter or two, for instance, 'am I over-reacting' or 'am I over-thinking' something. Or, of course, 'should I be getting angry about this?'.
It's really a strange new world for us, my brain and me. Perhaps everyone else felt like this sometime in their teens or early twenties, learning how to cope with the world, understanding themselves and experiencing their lives in different ways, learning how to react. I'm in my fifties, and learning like a teen. No, - not entirely - there must be some plasticity there, or I could not find it in me to make changes at all - but my brain is largely set now, as developed as it will be. But is that the same as saying my mind is set to the same degree? I don't think so. I'm not sure why I think that. But I do.
I probably need to think more on this.


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