That Old Lady Brain Fog

I was reminded yesterday of that weird hormonal brain fog we call pregnancy brain. You can’t remember anything, you’re an emotional disaster area, it feels like you’re walking around in a mental bowl of oatmeal and you can’t get out. OK, maybe that was just me. Apparently perimenopause does the same thing to you, similar to all the hormonal crap I teach at the end of the year to my students, explaining away puberty. Strangely, depression can pull some of the same shit on your brain, and if your depression might be partially due to hormone fluctuations because of impending menopause, hey, it’s like a giant vicious brain fog cycle that’s out to get you.

Yesterday started out wrong. I was on time, I had all my ducks in a row, and then I left the house. Went the wrong direction, eventually figured it out, went back the other way (luckily I had time), but it fucked up my equilibrium (such as it rockily is) in the morning and I spent all day trying to get it back.

For some reason, this song has been stuck in my head for like two weeks and it’s driving me bonkers because I can only remember the words that are in the title and they are constantly running through my head (ironic if you know me well)…

It’s not a bad song. It’s just depressing sounding and I’m tired of it inhabiting my head, so I’ve been trying to replace it for days. Yesterday, after the driving debacle, which was all before school started and did not bode well for my having a stellar day, I was driving up to the school parking lot and that song came on. So I’m in homeroom and it’s reverberating in my head. And I admit this to my students and sing to them (as you do) and realize…I need that fucker out of my head. Girlchild had played me this the night before…

which is a Completely Different Mood. It helped. I played it during homeroom. I danced around a bit (it’s OK…my students are very tolerant of crazy old ladies). It was better. But by the end of 4th period, that damn church song was back in there. So I played Meghan again. And it worked until after book club…when I pulled into my driveway…and that damn church song was on the radio again.


Yes, I’m playing Meghan right now. It’s amazing how music fucks with your head. Or at least my head…which has been all over the map for the last…I was going to say few days, but maybe it’s been longer than that. I can go from contentedly dancing to this stuff to on the floor weeping in about 3 seconds flat. I swear. It’s hard to believe you’re not going crazy when your brain flip-flops like that.

And I realized yesterday that I pulled a major brainfart over the summer. I’m amazed I was able to think myself through anything. Really, you should not let me make any major decisions, or even minor ones at the moment, and whoever gave me a credit card? Wow. Give it up. Take it away. Don’t let me be in charge of anything.

So trying to explain this to the guy at Apple who called my house confused last night about someone using a computer I’d bought and then…well, let’s just say that I hope he has an older woman in his life (mom?) who is going through the same shit, because otherwise he is going to just think I’m fucking nuts. I know the boychild does. The girlchild…she just tells me everything is OK and I’m NOT stupid and No, I can’t have her ADD meds.

Book club was last night. Book club is ostensibly where we talk about the book we were supposed to read last month (I read it! John Scalzi’s Red Shirts…amusing, especially if you’ve been watching Star Trek at the same time), but mostly add more books and movies and events to our to-do lists. Scalzi will be at Mysterious Galaxy in San Diego doing a book signing on Monday night (I can’t go), and apparently Kevin Hearne is funny on Facebook, and David Bowie is in a movie about Tesla, so I don’t have to read the biography (I did actually already give up and return it to the library)…I can just watch Bowie. I actually think I will just review the Oatmeal bio on Tesla and leave it at that.

As far as music goes, I wish I had a newer car where I could just program some stuff in there for when my brain is in the nasty place, so I can quickly get back on the bouncy dancing track and off the prostrate-on-the-floor track. The brain? I don’t even know what to do about that. I thought it was getting better, but it’s not. Maybe it never will.

I was reading articles about menopause and the brain and they suggest stupidass shit like “reduce stress.” Oh. OK. Will get right on that. I do try to do some art every day. They also suggested “organized relaxation.” That term cracks me up. I’m gonna call that meditation. Says it reduces hot flashes and night sweats (huh. weird. those are better now. maybe not so crazy). Then they want you to sleep more…ironic, because sleep is a major issue.

I didn’t get much done when I got home from book club…sewing bindings and sleeves and labels. That’s about it. Taking my depressed, foggy brain to bed and telling it that everything will be better some day. Then waking up at 4 AM for the third night in a row, this time convinced that the high-school back-to-school night will be the same night as my own school’s, overlapping in a way that means I don’t eat (I have done this before). It’s not, by the way. The easiest way to deal with stupid shit like that is to Google it. If only I’d thought to do that at 4 AM. I might have gotten more sleep. I hear Valerian herbal tea is good for deeper and longer sleep, especially when dealing with menopausal symptoms. I’m gonna go buy me some of that shit. Maybe they’ll have something for Menopause Brain Fog as well (or Depression Brain Fog. Or both. Who can tell the difference?). Meanwhile, thanks to Meghan Trainor for a song that tries to pull my brain out of its fuzzy funk. You’d think I would forget that I was depressed…I forget everything else.

2 Responses to That Old Lady Brain Fog

  1. Tanya Brown says:

    I have the soundtrack from Tommy stuck in my brain. Due to my habit of mangling lyrics, I go around singing things like “What about the dog? What about the dog? What about the dog, he saw it allllll.”

    I’m glad to have an explanation for this phenomenon. It’s clearly due to Brain Fog.


  2. sion says:

    I can’t imagine drinking a Valerian tea. Valerian works really well, but that is some really truly terrifically stinkystankarse shit. I have to hold my breath just to open the pill bottle, and not start breathing again until after I’ve swallowed one.


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