We watched Shudder Island last night. It was disturbing. Not because it was scary but because it made me feel crazy. The movie brought back memories from when I was in the coma, or when I was coming out of it. I felt like the main character living a false memory.
The memories seemed so real and still do. They were vivid and they lasted for what seemed to be days. I still can describe the faces, the places, the anxiety, and the pain. Whether I was a newscaster, a documentary film maker, or, a prisoner held against my will, they were my only reality during weeks of nothing.
We paused the movie and I asked Aimee about those memories. She said it was called confabulation. It results from a cerebral disconnection. She reached for her computer and read from a website. "Patients recovering from coma after a traumatic brain injury often start by retaining bits and pieces of information; hallucinations" she read.
It was strange watching a movie about mental illness and actually understanding what that means. It made me realize that I will never be removed from it. I am disturbed to think that those false memories will haunt me for the rest of my life. I'll carry them along like childhood memories. It freaks me out that on the outside no one will ever tell that anything happened but on the inside I will always have those false realities waiting to resurface.
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7 years ago