Brain Injury and Insomnia - "Abandoning Morpheus"

What’s a girl to do when sleep is gone? Create art.

It was 0330 and I was wide awake. Not just a little awake, but eyes open wide and brain raring to go. But where did it want to go? I’ve discovered that when there is no good constructive place to go, I can peacefully go to the place where I create. There is safety and solace there. A way to bathe a wandering mind in color and beauty. There are no thoughts worthy of wakefulness at this hour - the world is sleeping where I live. Thoughts can get scary and intrusive at this time with creation’s hush. All is still …

One of the biggest challenges of having an injury to the brain - whether through an accident or disease process - is that things that should work normally like sleep patterns / circadian rhythms and body temperature regulation just don’t. It kind of works like this: often, when you are hot, I’m cold … when you are sleeping, I’m awake or a million times vice versa. Oftentimes I will also smell things that are not there and chase a smell to no resolve. Sometimes it makes me feel a little insane. The constantly ringing ears are a plus too (I wear double hearing aids to drown some of that out because I have quite a bit of hearing loss). My brain makes up it’s own agenda. Things can flip flop in the blink of an eye. Sensory overload. It feels like I’ve become a lot more sensitive to these things over the past year or two. One day at a time, but it can be a lot to juggle. My recourse: look forward as best I can and stay occupied. No pity pots here.

Yesterday I felt a lot of fatigue. I went out and ran a few errands and it felt like I had run a marathon. None of it makes sense. But it’s the way life rolls now. I’m glad I have art to help fight intrusions and to distract me from my wandering mind. God’s gift to me in so many ways.

Below is a piece I’ve been working on but was able to finish this morning at about 0400. It’s one of those pieces where art imitates life for me. This is “Abandoning Morpheus” (Morpheus being the god of dreams). When I was in the convent, after night prayer one of the older nuns would pray that we would sleep well in the “arms of Morpheus”. This piece depicts the colors of night being sheared by colors of the day - a premature entry into that place of sleep and dreams.

“Abandoning Morpheus” an abstract I finished up during the wee hours of the morning.

“Abandoning Morpheus” an abstract I finished up during the wee hours of the morning.

Perception - I see things a little differently!

I learned something when I examined this picture today and I think it might shed a little light on the way my brain processes and could be a look into why I developed artistic ability through brain injury - maybe this gives an inkling.

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