My Stroke of Insight by Dr. Jill Bolte Taylor.
I was intrigued by the working of the brain from my last read book “Your Brain at work” hence I picked this book. This is such an amazing read.
Dr.Jill Bolte Taylor became a Brain scientist to understand how her brain works differently from her schizophrenic brother in terms of reality and delusions. On December 10 1996 she herself underwent a massive brain stroke in her left brain.
The book narrates her complete harrowing story of how she observed her brain as a patient going through this massive brain stroke and why she was motivated to recover herself. It took her 8 years to recover from this brain stroke.
If she was not a brain scientist she would have lost her courage and patience to rebuild herself and narrate her story to the whole world.
Our brain as you might be knowing is divided into two distinct parts:left brain and right brain. She had a stroke in her left brain. Left Brain is responsible for making us believe that we are different from the surrounding world i.e. “I exist”.Our right brain is responsible for our present existence and left is associated with past and future.
When she had a stroke she explained that she lost her sense of boundaries between wall and her body. She states that she was in a state of “Nirvana” (A kind of state where you become one with the whole Universe according to Hindu beliefs). She jokingly refers this place as her “La La Land”(You must have watched this interesting movie). At the time of her stroke she could not walk,talk and speak. Somehow she was able to call for help at her work place and her colleague rescued her. Our language centre is in the left brain hence she could not understand what she was saying and what other person on the telephone was saying.
We all must have heard the constant chatter in our brain. Her brain chatter completely stopped. We all must feel relief that our brain is balanced and working (Appreciate this immediately).
The stroke completely debilitated her condition. She was operated and a golf like clot was removed from her left brain due to brain hemorrhage in her brain surgery. But after her brain surgery she had to practice her brain to deal with light and sound because she was unable to bear the light and the sound.
I had read that she completely stopped watching television during her recovery because it was a sheer torture for her as her brain could not comprehend what was going on the screen.
I was a television buff but after reading this book I have reduced my television watching. This is the one thing that has touched my core so much. The way she described the effect of television made such a lasting impression on my mind.You have to read it to believe it.
The book describes in detail how she pulled herself to recovery by applying her knowledge of brain studies. She had support of her mother in this journey. It took 8 years to make her feel normal again.
I highly recommend you to read this book. If you are short of time do watch her TED talk linked below to appreciate this lady. This is such an inspirational story of courage of a Brain scientist.