As with other GAN kids, numbness is accompanied by an unusual sensitivity.
It took a while for the numbness that followed the initial shock to wear off.
Sometimes only the immediacy of news can break through the numbness.
c.1400, nome, "deprived of motion or feeling," literally "taken, seized," from past participle of nimen "to take, seize," from Old English niman "to take, catch, grasp" (see nimble). The extraneous -b (to conform to comb, limb, etc.) appeared 17c. The notion is of being "taken" with palsy, shock, and especially cold. Figurative use from 1560s.
1550s, from numb (adj.). Related: Numbed; numbing.
Being unable or only partially able to feel sensation or pain; deadened or anesthetized.
Being emotionally unresponsive; indifferent.
Stupid; unresponsive (1950s+)