It has begun.
This time of year for the last several years is weird for me. I suddenly skew off the track into scatteredness and I have a very hard time keeping track of what day it is until the 4th of July has passed. Every year since 2009 I have panicked near the end of June that I have missed the fireworks, and it's still two weeks away. This has happened so consistently that now I'm able to anticipate the brain flux and watch myself from the sidelines. I just discovered that 3 days ago I started writing the date completely wrong. This morning I wrote the date as the 25th on my daily med log (which I've had to do for many years because memory probs, med mixups, and resulting panic), then noticed the 28th in the corner of my laptop screen, went back through the log, and noticed that I suddenly went back in time 3 days ago.
Five years ago around this time my mom was nearing the end of her 5 years long nursing home residency. As durable power of attorney, I had been the first person the staff called for everything, day and night, and her bouncing on and off hospice several times the last couple of years that she was there encouraged a creeping numbness to grow over me. Still, the 'end' dragged out for months again until finally everything was over in the fall and I was able to switch off my phone for the first time in five years.
When the first May/June rolled around after that, I didn't notice I got weird. I was busy with other things. My own health was just starting to pick back up after several years of tough illness, and we had plenty of other distractions going on. Same with the next year, and the next, and the next. But I started remembering last year that I've been panicking about missing the 4th of July over and over, which seemed pretty odd. Why was I doing that? I'm not that big of a Fourth celebrator, and it doesn't have much personal meaning for me.
I've been mulling over this off and on this last year, now that I'm aware of it, and hypothesized that maybe I go off track because my mom's birthday rolls around near the end of June, and somehow I create a very wide cushion of time to scatter myself in so I can surf over that without having to drag through really big feelings. I get scattered and kooky for weeks, and by the time her birthday floats by, I'm diverting my feelings onto missing the next holiday.
I've been curious all year if I'd be able to notice when it starts, and I just caught today that it started 3 days ago. Now I get to watch myself be kooky and scattered for a few weeks. Incidentally, 3 days ago is exactly a month and a day before my mom's birthday. Maybe I couldn't bear to see the 26th come up on my log and just jumped back in time.
My life has been filled with puzzles like these, I think mainly because I'm a bit deeper in the autism spectrum than many aspies out there. I'm an expert at diverting myself, and I do most of it unconsciously. Many people like me get diagnosed with schizophrenia or personality disorders by mistake when it's really a social interaction difficulty that grows into weirdness under stress, thank goodness the testing I asked to go through in my 20's didn't get me wrongly diagnosed. As much as I'd like to think that it's more amusing than it is a real problem, and something I managed to hide for many years, the unkindness of aging keeps whipping the tablecloth off my head and now I just have to laugh. Several people have labeled me eccentric through the years, so evidently I glow like neon even when I think I'm incognito. The year before my mom passed I was declared disabled by a review panel including a doctor and a judge, and to my surprise, the mental side carried more weight than the physical side of the discussion, thanks to the Asperger's and a GAF score of 51-60. I'd apparently been functional enough to get through college and hold several jobs, but serious questions of "How?" perplexed several professionals. Honestly, I blame my mom. She was extremely tough on me, and I survived. Maybe this is what my scatteredness is all about, now that she's gone.
So. I'm a scattered mess. Maybe I can have some fun with this. Maybe I can catch myself doing the time warp again and see what's in my noggin when it happens.