Monday, May 23, 2011

Is pain in our brain like a computer virus? Zach I am still looking for you.

"No no no this sucker's electrical" –Doc Brown Back to The Future

This is of course the famous line when Doc Brown is explaining to Marty how time travel is possible. In 1985 when the words 1.21 Giga watts was spoken nobody I knew had ever heard of or needed to think of numbers that big. Now trillion and tera are part of the everyday lexicon. This is how we describe money or computer memory in the present. I was thinking about this, and our brains and their capacity. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard we only use 10% of our brain and wondered if it was fear stopping us from using more.  I know this might seem like it is coming out of left field but it will all make more sense soon. The reason I was considering all of this is two part. First, I was thinking a lot about the recent psychology class I took last semester. Secondly, the last couple of months have been especially taxing on my mind and emotions.
As many of you know, I have been trying to contact my son who celebrated his 18th birthday last month. I have been estranged from him since Christmas time in 2000. I thought I had been successful in contacting him. As it turns out, I was exchanging text messages with his mother who was only too willing to play along. It was just another opportunity for her to drive the knife deeper into my chest metaphorically speaking. She must have truly enjoyed me pouring my heart out to who I thought was my long lost son. The fact that she moved out of state without my permission and hid our son for eleven years must have simply slipped her mind. The fact that she got over on me yet again really had a damaging affect on my spirit. I have been licking my wounds these last several weeks trying to get the courage up to reach him again, this process has taken its toll. I am finished waiting for this feeling to pass. Attacking the problem directly is the only way to get my mind working at full speed again.
I have been using the information I learned in psychology to try to better understand what and why I was feeling these emotions. I was certain that my brain was in some type of protection/auto-pilot mode to a degree. I am using logic to break free of this mode and prevent and permanent damage. This is when it occurred to me that the electrical paths my brain was taking were different  than they normally were. I figured out that since the pathways in my brain had been altered my mind was not working as efficiently as possible. The fact that I am writing this and attempting to restore those connections is the first step to fully recovering. Also, if we employ a host of defense mechanisms in order to avoid the painful topics in our mind we will just keep adding more detours in our thought processes and eventually take much longer to complete a roundtrip thought.
I have no imperial data to back up these theories they are just my mind trying to make sense of recent events. As a computer security student, I can think in these terms. A perceived painful event is similar to getting a computer virus. If you do not remove it, the normal path taken by the data will become corrupted and will not function properly. The same thought will use more resources to be completed and eventually you will crash. I am sure there are those that will read this and mock its simplistic argument. I am not pretending to be a psychologist just a man who has been trying to deal with the pain of not seeing my son. I feel much better traveling directly into the heart of the issue and attacking it head-on.
The chemical-electrical processes in the brain are above my level of understanding. I just know that since I have got back on the horse and started back toward my goal of reuniting with my son Zach someday soon my thinking is quicker and my mind is better able to function. If anyone who might read this can take some value from it then by all means I will be glad to have helped. I do believe the pathways in the brain are voluntarily reachable. You just need to summon the courage to volunteer. Good luck and full speed ahead.

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