Illness Can Confuse Our Perspectives and Mess Up Communication

Do you ever confuse people with an odd word that “sounds like” the word you are thinking of? Kerryn explains brain fog and how we need to not jump to conclusions by our perspective.

“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good” (Romans 7:15-16).

“What do you mean?”

“I don’t understand?”

“I can’t find the word!”

“Can you get the thing-amee?”

These are all common statements of mine, as confusion and muddled up conversations are part of my new “normal.”

Brain fog is a frustrating part of so very many chronic invisible illnesses. It can cause much hilarity too, as I’ve asked for Vegemite instead of vegetables and asked if someone wants a piece of lettuce, instead of a piece of licorice!

I’ve discovered that it also causes some warped perspectives of the truth, about people and situations.

My youngest son has a mild intellectual disability and a central auditory processing disorder, amongst other issues. Put simply, he often became muddled and confused about simple things, and still does.

When he was running in sprint races, in his early years, he would move from his outer lane to the inner lanes and trip other children up. This happened for three years in a row, until we finally asked the right specific questions, that explained all.

In essence, he was on the outside lane with people cheering loudly next to him. The crowds were encouraging the children. However, to my child, they were shouting at him. . . . angrily! Naturally he moved away from them to the inner lanes, tripping others over, creating angry reactions, which confirmed his belief!

It took quite some convincing to explain that they were happy encouraging shouts, not angry ones. Shouting was “angry shouting” to him!

How often do we warp and confuse others actions towards us, during illness?

I know that I’ve had some people’s actions that have really upset me. If I’d have left the situation, it would have created anger, bitterness, grief, and resentment within me. However, my son’s races have helped me to look at situations in different ways. Often what has left me feeling hurt and dismayed have been actions by another, that they were doing out of love.

I just didn’t interpret it that way, at the time.

The Bible verses from Romans 7:15-16 have always been quite confusing to me. Now that I’m ill they makes more sense than they ever have! I know that it speaks of sinning, but it also speaks of an ill body and brain muddling up speech and thoughts, when I know what I want to say and think!

God sure is taking my life experiences and using them to help in my new journey with my own illnesses.

Praise God for His help during illness. At least He knows what I’m trying to communicate!

Prayer: Lord, thank You that You’re helping to untangle the confused thoughts and perspectives that can occur in my illness journey. Help me to come to You when I’m feeling offended by another’s actions. Show me what else could be going on, that I’m not seeing in my own illness state. Amen.

About the Author:
Kerryn Wright lives with her family amongst the gum trees in South Australia. She was a special education teacher prior to chronic illness. Her husband is carer for three of their family, who have chronic illnesses and disabilities. God has always guided them through life’s challenges, often in surprising ways.

Are there any people’s comments or actions that have upset you, that may have actually been done out of love? What situations do you need to take to the Lord, or re-evaluate?

This video is the lyrics of “All I Can Say” with the David Crowder Band. When you feel you have been misinterpreted, judged, or even deserted, the lyrics of this song will touch a place in your heart. -Lisa

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