Confessions of a brained blogger

brain5

Shortly after tapping out last week’s blog offering, I started to work on the next piece. I poured out my heart and my soul. It was great stuff. At least it was good stuff. But nobody but me will ever know for sure.

That’s because it’s gone.

Early Sunday morning after I warmed up my aging laptop to start putting the finishing touches on, my words were gone. They’d vanished into thin air.

A few colorful word combinations were followed by another search. But there was nothing.

This happened to me once way back in the ‘90s when I was an Edmonton Sun reporter. I was about 15 minutes from deadline. And I was working on the lead story. A few very choice words were hurled at me. Sun editors back then weren’t the warm and fuzzy nurturing types.

I spent five minutes trying to retrieve and coax my piece from wherever it lay trapped in the beat up work processor. Then I spent the next nine re-writing it from scratch. I’m pretty sure that the final offering was better than the first.

Harkening back to that experience, I first decided to re-trace my original blog steps. A few minutes into this, I decided to change gears and address the elephant at the laptop.

Being a rookie brain buzzed blogger is coming with some unique problems. Problems which I’ve looked for some help with, but mostly which I’ve been fumbling and stumbling along with on my own, trying to find solutions.

The tools I have are great. My reading device is a literary life saver. But navigating the WordPress site when I’m trying to build my blog isn’t smooth sailing for me. Trying to figure out the Tweeting and re-Tweeting world leaves me feeling a bit like a student taking university classes in a foreign tongue. And I confess that I haven’t perfected the nuances of using Facebook to its maximum potential.  Nowhere close, actually.

It’s not the tools, it’s me. With my turtle slow reading speed and the ‘new’ way my memory works post stroke, I’m not the model blog student. It’s kinda like being back in junior high school for me, actually.

So I’m swallowing my pride and turning to all of you readers for your help. My pride is swallowed.

Please share with me your ideas of making the blog look and navigate better. Please give me the skinning on getting this blog out beyond my network so that I can share this brain food was many, many others.

I’m working on a piece about concussions in NHL players and other athletes. I’ve got a piece coming on brain games to increase mental power. I want to make sure that I don’t fail potential readers by being a remedial blogger.

Oh, by the way, you’ll see on the site a couple of nods for some great brain books. One by Howard Engel, the other by Oliver Sacks. I plan to continue to share books and movies that do a mind good. Please take a look and share any ideas that you have on other brain books or movies.

So, last week, I shared the last of the Edmonton Journal piece I wrote last year. For the final wrap on this, here’s the side bar that ran with the piece.

Warning signs of stroke

You don’t fight back from the devastation of a stroke without a lot of people in your corner.

For Seefeldt, it started with his family recognizing the signs of a stroke and calling an ambulance.

Faster treatment means a better chance of recovery. The longer you go untreated the more your brain is scrambled and the tougher the road back.

There are five main signs of a stroke:

Weakness – sudden loss of strength or sudden numbness in the face or leg

Trouble speaking

Vision problems

Headaches;

Dizziness Seefeldt had all five, but any of these may be worth a call to 911.

There are risk factors to be aware of, like high blood pressure and cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, smoking and stress, according to the website for the Heart & Stroke foundation. Sometimes strokes happen for reasons that aren’t fully understood.

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