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jimmy m
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20 Jan 2022, 3:06 pm

I suffered a major stroke around 10 months ago. My youngest daughter bought me several books about stroke victims. This was a little difficult because I had lost my ability to read after the stroke. But I figured nothing lost by building my reading ability back. One of these books was titled "My Stroke of Insight" by Jill Bolte Taylor. Around the age of 35, she suffered a massive stroke, a really massive stroke that cut right through the middle of her head. The first half of the book describes in fine detail what happened after her stroke. But the next half of the book was what I found VERY, VERY INTERESTING.

She came back as an entirely different person. If you look at the human skull, you will see that it has two sides. One on the right and the other on the left side. Most people spend their entire life using their left side brain. When the stroke struck Jill her mind shifted position and her right side of her brain became the primary brain and the left side became secondary. She became a totally different person. Before the stroke, she was a type of medical doctor called a NeuroAnotamist and was working for Harvard Medical School in Massachusetts. After the stroke, I would describe her personality change as New Age. Two entirely different people. She describes how the stroke changed her in the following words:

Prior to this experience with stroke, the cells in my left hemisphere had been capable of dominating the cells in my right hemisphere. The judging and analytical character in my left mind dominated my personality. When I experienced the hemorrhage and lost my left hemisphere language center cells that defined my self, those cells could no longer inhabit the cells in my right mind. As a result, I have gained a clear delineation of the two very distinct characters cohabiting my cranium. The two halves of my brain don't just perceive and think in different ways at a neurological level, but they demonstrate very different values based upon the types of information they perceive, and thus exhibit very different personalities. My stroke of insight is that at the core of my right hemisphere consciousness is a character that is directly connected to the expression of peace, love, joy, and compassion in the world.

After several months/years her left side of her brain tried to again gain control. She describes it in the following way:

My left brain became competent again when it regained the ability to process information at fast rates of speed. Now that it is completely back online, it tends to reengage with life at what feels like a million miles an hour. Needless to say, the natural competition between my left hemisphere language centers and my right hemisphere's experience of inner peace has grounded me back in the normal human condition. A part of me is thrilled to be so functional again. A bigger part of me is terrified.

So what is interesting about this book and about Jill is that I think she is correct. That humans have two independent brains. As a species, we are a thousand times more complex than what is currently believed. Most people have left sided brains. But some people in early life suffered a near death experience. We survived but came back a little different than other humans. And as a result, our view of the world is very different than the majority of the human race.

When I was a small child around the age of 3 or 4, my father bought a thousand pound bull to raise on the farm. One day, I was outside and the bull struck me in the head. I don't remember the attack but I remember what happened next. My parents brought me into the house and put me in my bed and waited in fear and terror. I remember seeing them and their fear. I was at the point of death and I saw they were so sad, so I came back. But the person that came back was the other part of me (my right sided brain). Eventually my left side recovered. Essentially my two halves switched places.


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IsabellaLinton
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20 Jan 2022, 7:03 pm

Thanks, jimmy.

That was interesting. I've heard of the two-brain theory and the fact that autistic people have trouble bridging back and forth between the hemispheres. I read that it's like a traffic jam for us with information overload between logical thought / order on the left, and emotional or sensory perception on the right. We don't integrate the two as artfully as non-autistic people might. That was a theory, anyway. One way to integrate the sides is to draw pictures from an upside-down source. Copy a picture which you turned upside down because your left brain will view it systemically like an unfamiliar image, while your right brain will try to be artistic.

I suffered a big stroke in my cerebellum which is considered centre brain (neither left nor right), although the actual infarction was more on my left. It made the left side of my body not work, which is different than most strokes. Usually the effects are on the opposite side but not with cerebellums. Some doctors didn't even seem to know this until they did more research, since cerebellar strokes are very rare. Add the fact I was also autistic and my response was extremely atypical.

I had double vision and couldn't use my left arm / leg very well. I went to a year of rehab including PT, OT, Speech, Visual training and Vestibular rehab for balance. They blocked my eye like they did yours, but put a pinprick in the patch so my eye would turn the proper direction again and focus forward. I lost quite a bit of my verbal vocabulary and had word salad especially with compound words. Putting two words together in the right order to make a compound was very hard. Something like "snowman" might come out "cold statue" or "coldman" or "snowcold".

I don't want to write too much as you likely get tired reading. I just wanted to thank you for the article and wish you all the best. It's a slow road to recovery but you seem to be doing really well.

So happy to see you again.



jimmy m
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20 Jan 2022, 7:54 pm

The way I would describe Two Brain Theory is as follows.
Humans have two brains. But these brains are generally not active at the same time. We have a primary brain that we would identify as our primary brain. It is a daytime brain.

But we have a secondary brain that is active in the deepest part of the sleep cycle called REM (Rapid Eye Movement) sleep.
REM sleep is when you tend to have vivid dreams. In REM sleep, major muscles that you normally control (such as arms and legs) can’t move. In effect, they become temporarily paralyzed. The amount of REM sleep you experience changes as you age. Babies can spend up to 50% of their sleep in the REM stage. Since babies sleep longer than adults, they can spend around 5 or 6 hours per night in REM. Adults generally get between 1 to 2 hours per night in REM. And as you age into old age, this amount of sleep drops to near zero.

According to the internet your body goes through a series of changes during REM sleep. These changes include:
Faster breathing.
Increased heart rate and blood pressure.
Penile erections.
Rapid eye movement.

From my perspective, one of the functions of the brain during REM is to take everything that happens during the day that is stored in Short Term Memory and move the important items into Long Term Memory for storage. And it performs this task at near light speed. And then comes one final very important step. IT ERASES SHORT TERM MEMORY. This prepares your body for another new day. If you do not receive a good sleep, one that includes some REM sleep, then your body begins to crash. Several days of not getting REM sleep can cause headaches and eventually the events of the day will smash into lost memory.

I have been studying this for several years before my stroke. I had a FITBIT and monitored my sleep cycle daily each morning. I noticed that I did not fit the norm. Where most people my age had almost no REM sleep per night, I had around 1 to 2 hours per night. I even found that I could communicate with my REM brain. When I was deep in REM sleep and woke up and then returned back to sleep, I could force my brain to stay awake and after a few minutes my REM brain would appear. He was sort of like Mr. Spook in the movie Star Trek. He was such a fast brain that I found it difficult to communicate with. So in general I mostly just listened and watched.


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jimmy m
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20 Jan 2022, 9:23 pm

Thank you IsabellaLinton for your words of encouragement. I am sorry you suffered a stroke also. I hope you are making progress towards recovering much of the loss.

Numbers were always my strong suit. But after the stroke, I have to be very careful when using numbers. I will write a number but when I write it, many times I will write it wrong. So any time I write a check, I always have my wife review it to make sure that I didn't make a mistake.

For the past few months, I have been working on trying to restore my vision loss. I think I have made some progress but I am not quit there yet. I take classes around once per week. I am using an instrument called a Dynavision. It is an instrument used by professional athletes to improve their speed during competitions. I have made significant improvement in my vision speed.


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Juliette
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20 Jan 2022, 9:50 pm

So good to see you back, jimmy! Now that was an interesting read. Thanks for sharing.

I lost my mother to a stroke when I was 4 years of age(my Mother was 32years and had a baby of 18mths (a total of 6 children) and I remember it vividly, as I’d been sitting on her lap. Strokes have taken quite a number of family members, an aunt at 17yrs, and three Uncles and my Grandfather.

I wish for you a steady recovery and have a deep appreciation that you made it back.



Jakki
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20 Jan 2022, 10:50 pm

Welcome back Jimmy M ........ am glad you are recovering from your stroke ..
Very interesting article Thank You. Having been borne left handed then after life ending accident in late teens and some brain damage lost use of my left hand. And h ad to become right handed . i went through many changes but fo to the amount of crushing injuries And left side paralysis . Had to only focus on learning to function . So could not focus on mental changes . Lolz ...even after all that am still leftside dominant according to tests. So two brain theory is quite interesting .

Very Sorry you had to go through your strokes Jimmy m and Isabella Linton ..Glad your with us still .!


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1986
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20 Jan 2022, 10:52 pm

Glad to have you back, Jimmy! Hope you continue to recover!



jimmy m
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21 Jan 2022, 8:59 am

One of the things that fits into this discussion of Two Brain Theory is Sleepwalkers.

According to the Internet - Sleepwalking — also known as somnambulism — involves getting up and walking around while in a state of sleep. More common in children than adults, sleepwalking is usually outgrown by the teen years. Isolated incidents of sleepwalking often don't signal any serious problems or require treatment.

Someone who is sleepwalking may:
- Get out of bed and walk around
- Sit up in bed and open his or her eyes
- Have a glazed, glassy-eyed expression
- Not respond or communicate with others
- Be difficult to wake up during an episode
- Be disoriented or confused for a short time after being awakened
- Not remember the episode in the morning

Sometimes, a person who is sleepwalking will:
- Do routine activities, such as getting dressed, talking or eating
- Leave the house
- Drive a car


I experience Sleepwalking once in my life. I was in my late teens. I was driving late at night, around 1 A.M. and I fell asleep at the wheel. I woke up 2 hours later, around 120 miles down the road. My mind was in a panic. This must have occurred somewhere in deep Texas where the roads go on for miles and miles in a perfectly straight line. I had come across a split in the road and my second brain could not figure out which way to go, so it panicked. I stopped the car and told my parents that someone else needed to drive. I told myself (my second brain) to never, never, never, never do this again. And my second brain obeyed my command.


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jimmy m
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21 Jan 2022, 9:06 am

Thank you 1986, Jakki and Juliette for your words of encouragement.


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kraftiekortie
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21 Jan 2022, 9:10 am

You're a very smart man, Jimmy.

I doubt very much you've actually lost much permanently, if at all.



IsabellaLinton
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21 Jan 2022, 9:16 am

I sleepwalked last night, and last spring.



theprisoner
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21 Jan 2022, 9:26 am

I sleepwalked as young teenager, once or twice , maybe. Going downstairs, and putting on tv, lol. dazed and confused. (not the movie or song, my mindstate.) What's f-d up is, i think i was wearing nothing but underpants. And my mom might have seen me! I think she did. How freakin embarrassing!


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kraftiekortie
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21 Jan 2022, 10:48 am

I sleepwalked at age 7 and younger.



jimmy m
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21 Jan 2022, 12:09 pm

This is an image of the human skull which shows our two brains.

Image


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jimmy m
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22 Jan 2022, 7:05 am

It is a cold one this morning. My temperature dropped down to 7.5 degrees F. I think that is the coldest temperature for the season here. Wife has put some firewood into the wood stove and the house is beginning to heat up again. Everyone stay warm.


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kraftiekortie
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22 Jan 2022, 7:42 am

It’s 14 Fahrenheit now. I believe it was 11 Fahrenheit one day about 10 days ago.

In NYC.