A few weeks ago, I went to the toilet after waking up. Normally I get a cup of coffee afterward. Instead, I cleaned the toilet right away because I was ignoring this for three weeks. I didn’t smell any of the cleaning products, not even the chlorine. After cleaning, I went to the kitchen to make a coffee. On my way back to bed, I stopped because I smelled the clean toilet. I left my coffee on the cupboard when I got back to the toilet to smell it. Then I went to the kitchen to make a cup of coffee. While making the coffee, I thought I already took the milk out of the refrigerator. I looked in the living room for a cup of coffee. Nothing there. Back in bed, with a cup of coffee, I saw another coffee on the cupboard. It must be from yesterday, I thought. So I went over to feel; it was warm…

I can make a list of things like this happening. My general practitioner asked me how I remembered this. It seems I remember things causing strong emotions, events I wrote down in handwriting, and I can recall because while I’m telling the story, I’m imaginably walking through my house, reliving it. When I do this on a spatial basis, it sometimes sticks in my long-term memory.

In my experience with Long Covid so far, it seems that something is going wrong in my brain because my senses are lacking. Normally you use all your senses during your Beta state (13-38Hz). This is the state you’re awake and do your daily activities. Those daily activities don’t go automatic anymore as they did before. My working memory gets stuck because of the overload of unfiltered information, which never reaches my short-term or long-term memory if I don’t deliberately interfere. Very exhausting in both ways, living with it or interfering.

During the day, when I’m supposed to be in the Beta state, my awareness alternates between the Beta and Delta state (1-3 Hz). There were times during my Covid year that I woke up on the couch after a two-hour nap, not knowing what happened. Luckily I take my rest at least twice a day now, besides a normal night. With help from my occupational therapist, I’m building a daily pattern with lots of rest, a healthy diet, brain exercise, meditations, exercise in the form of walks, and little bike rides.

The brain wave states gave me insight into my options during the day; I see an ability to be more productive in a more satisfying way. For example, I sleep at least 3 times a day, so I reach a Theta state (4-7 Hz) more often. How can that support me to be more creative? More productive? And what if I can use the Alpha brainwaves (8-12 Hz) to solve problems in my sleep?

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DAPHNE IN STOCKINGS is a writer with a blog telling her story about surviving blood clots, living with FVL, blood thinners, and stockings. And coping with Covid-19 twice in 2020. She's telling her story about building resilience in a physical and mental struggle to heal.