Explaining My Brain

Many of you have asked if I can explain what’s going on with my brain (besides the obvious clot). [ http://blog.scottsontherocks.com/blog/2014/02/11/hematologist-appointment-021114/ ]

Let’s say we are having a conversation about the Denver sports team uniforms.  I might say something like “their uniforms are blue and…..” (I would be pausing here because my brain cannot think of the word for the color I want to use, I can “SEE” the color in my mind)… I say gold and you offer up orange.  I try to commit this to memory “OK, blue and orange.”  Then I refer to the last game where our player was hacked and knocked down and the refs didn’t call it.  I can see the smile on your face as you are thinking “tackled” but hacked is close.  But it was an awesome game ending when he made the score.  Again you smile, “score” is close to touchdown.

But I am talking about BASKETBALL!  I should have said yellow, not gold; fouled, not hacked; and basket, not score.

Another example:

This was one of the tests I struggled with.  Imagine you are grading a third grader on a reading exam.  Let’s say I am READING a note to you and you are sitting “over there” and not reading the note.  I say “Bob called about lunch on Tuesday.”  That’s a proper sentence so you agree.  What the paper actually says “Robert called regarding your meeting Thursday evening.”

YOU don’t know I am totally wrong, UNLESS you are reading the exact words I am reading.  They’ve told me it’s not memory LOSS, it’s memory RECALL.  Obviously, the words are in there, I just have to get my brain to access them all correctly.

I was told they know this because one of the early tests (in hospital) was of flash cards.  Let’s say one was an elephant.  I didn’t know “elephant” but I said “well, it’s NOT a giraffe.” Please don’t be offended if I cannot remember your name, I can probably tell you what it’s NOT!

SOOOO, don’t believe me if I am talking about numbers, dates, times, months, etc.  I may SOUND convincing but odds are, I’m wrong 😉  Usually, I can “see” the right thing in my mind but my mouth says something different, or my hand writes something different.  If I say it outloud… “sometimes” I can catch myself and fix it (sometimes, it takes more than one attempt).  HOWEVER, if I am reading or writing, my brain doesn’t “see” the error, USUALLY it picks something plausible and moves on.  This is very frustrating, considering I’m nit-picky about spelling!

What’s even crazier, is that I can “deal with” my errors, but if YOU spell or say something incorrectly, FORGET IT… I am lost.  I am improving on that but in the beginning if you sent me a text and misspelled THE as teh… I would just try and figure out what teh meant.  I couldn’t even force myself to move past it and go on to the next word.  It’s not so bad anymore but think of all the slips you might make while speaking; you might say “consultant” when you mean contractor, or whatever.  If I am standing here giving you a weird look…. I am lost!

My short-term memory is not very sharp… so don’t distract me! I can only do ONE thing at a time. 😉 Yes, I can set reminders, but if they go off while I am doing something else, I usually forget to get back to it; same with paper, at some point, I still have to remember that I made a list! If you tell me something, I might not remember unless, you remind me… maybe.

Hopefully, this helps. It’s also partly the reason why some of my posts are so much shorter, it requires a LOT of effort to haggle with spell check… the other part is I am just lazy! 🙂

One Year Ago:  http://blog.scottsontherocks.com/blog/2013/03/01/thanks-for-the-blanket/

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