Concentration absolutely buggered. Is that in the literature? I can’t remember, since I’ve got no concentration. I go to the Google every five minutes and type things like: ‘stop smoking – nicotine’ and ‘stop smoking – dopamine’ and ‘STOP SMOKING HELP’. Then I read like a mad woman and then five minutes later I can’t remember what any of it said.
I think I’m supposed to be cranky. I’m not especially cranky. This morning at HorseBack (stay outside, stay outside) I was actually quite perky. There was a very lovely group of visitors and they and the horses were all doing good work and the sun was shining off the snow and life seemed filled with point and meaning. I need point and meaning and am happy when I have them. I really am awfully simple.
But then I had to go inside to my desk to finish my HorseBack work and the concentration was so bad I had to make a list. The list said things like: ‘Do Work. Write Blog. Do HorseBack Pictures. Write Red Mare Post. Walk Dogs. Give Horses Hay.’ I’m surprised it did not say: ‘Breathe In and Out. Put One Foot In Front Of Another.’
I’m also very, very slow. It’s taken me all day to do the HorseBack stuff. I’m going to have to send a shame-faced note to my agent telling her that a deadline needs to be pushed.
Still, the hugely good news is that I think my dopamine receptors or producers or whatever they are called are still working. Apparently, too much nicotine can trash the poor little darlings almost beyond redemption. But I only have to look at a photograph of my thoroughbred with snow on her ears or Darwin the Dog with icicles on his whiskers to feel happy and glad. So that really is something. Five minutes after the happiness and gladness the shouty voices yell ‘Smoke the world!!!’ and I beadily take their measure and decide that they are more annoying than anything. I can deal with a bit of annoyance. I don’t enjoy it but it’s not the end of everything. I can go back to the sweet pictures of my dear animals and get my dopamine shot.
I just wish I did not feel that I am having to relearn the English language and the rudiments of actual life. But I expect that it just a thing. And I expect it will pass. It will be quite lovely to be able to write a coherent sentence again. I am looking forward to that day.