Tag Archive | Memory

Trying to get back to “normal” or at least as normal as it gets with FM

Well, things are half way back to normal in the sleep department, I say half way, as I am basically making myself get up at my usual hour, no matter if I have had enough sleep or not. Which I hate to do, but I really do not see as I have much choice here. I cannot just sleep the entire day away, when I have things to do. Warning… on a rant roll tonight, so just bear with me.

It’s already bad enough, that most nights my Mate and I, almost swap places in the bed, as I am no more than getting in it and getting half way to sleep, when he is getting out, but to miss him entirely for whole the day too ! Unacceptable. So no matter the cost, this sleep all day, has got to stop.

Even if it does mean, that half of the time my brain is fried, and my memory has gone completely to hell here. Everything that needs doing, MUST be done.. right now or it is not gonna happen. As mentally, I am running on empty here.

Now, if all that were not enough, I have a brand new issue. Does anyone else have tongue or mouth problems with FM ? For the past month and half and more now, my whole mouth feels like it’s sore. My tongue is literally cracked right down the middle, and has sores on the edges. Like I have been chewing on it, which is totally impossible, as other than to eat, ( which has been a trick lately as it hurts to eat most things right now ) I do not even wear my lower plate, I have not for years.

This is one of the issues I wanted to talk to my doctor about, you know the office that gave me an appointment, for Oct, when the last time I saw the woman, was in June ! And I told them why I wanted to see her, when I called.

And the glands under my arms hurt like all get out, every time my arms are down, you can literally see some swelling in some places. It all seems to scream some kind of immune system malfunction to me, but as to what could be creating it, or if that is even whats going on here, I have not a clue.

But such weirdness can happen with FM, as our immune system is most often going full bore, or you basically have none there is no middle ground here… and this, given all else that is going on, just might be the result of one of those times, that I really do not have much of an immune system, and the stuff showing up, is the result, but this could be something else, altogether, so I cannot just shrug it off.

Just because we have FM does not mean we cannot have something totally unrelated to it, going on too ! FM does not give us any immunity from coming down with other stuff, on top of FM. Is is hard to remember that, when FM alone brings in so many things that can go wrong here.. but any thing new, HAS to be investigated.

The back, legs and neck are still a mess and I have just about given up on the idea of a Chiropractor, as the fight to get the service, is just about too much. It doesn’t do me a whole lot of good, to add to my stress levels, just trying to fight my HMO over it, so I am gonna try for at least a PT as that, they might be more reasonable about.

Not to mention, the ears are both still acting up and still no ENT appointment.. as of yet anyway and I even put in that dang request, in writing ….well over a mt ago !

Sigh, some days, I just do not have the energy, to handle it all, and ride herd on my doctors entire medical staff, many of whom, are not doing their dang jobs !

Gonna have a word with Doc on all of that, as I am positive no one asked her if she thought she should see me sooner for all of this. The one I  seem to keep getting on the phone in her office, can barely speak English, so it’s a sure bet she doesn’t understand it all that well either !

To me, anyone who cannot speak English here in America, has no damn business answering a phone in a professional capacity ! Particularly, not in a Doctors office.

I think from now on, if I hear that voice, I will automatically ask for someone else, as I am getting dang tired of her mis-handling things, likely due to her own incomprehension of the language, both spoken and written, as she does not seem to get what shes reading, either.

Well, that’s enough whinge for one night, I am tired and need to at least lay down.. so good night all and may your rest be blessed



Memory issues and FMS, why the system fails

Well, I have a stack of a “To do ” list…again. It seems I no more than clear my desk and a dozen more show up. It is on the same order of when you kill one fly, 10 more show up for his funeral ! 🙂 But behind it all, is memory.

Web work to do, Doctors to call, specialists to call, the good old fashioned social services screw up, to where I need to call to find out what the heck happened sorta deal. Call my mechanic to find out, okay, when are you going to be done with my car ? 

And again, all of this seems to pile up on the weekend, when as far as calls go, I cannot do a thing, about it ! This does not even take into account, any day to day tasks, that might need doing, that I need to remember.

Anyway, whats my point here ? The “To do” list goad, the one that seems like a nasty boss, standing over our shoulder… with a stick. Now, should we feel that way about it ? Of course not, but do we ? Rather often yeah, we do.

Now just about everybody does this, getting a bit stressed about remembering things, but we with FM, in particular. For one simple reason … Memory issues.

Let me put it this way, our short term memory can be so bad, that if we cannot do, whatever it is, right now, then the pressure is on. As now we have to try and figure out a way, to make sure we DO it, when the time for being able to do it, shows up and HOPE we do not manage to forget about it entirely, in the meantime.

My desk is always littered with post it notes, or full pages, if it is detailed. Reminders on my computer that pop up and go hey.. have you done this yet ? Telling the brain, over and over, so that it has even half a chance, of being retained.

Now, what gives us this problem is pretty simple. It is two fold, as short term memory is all but gone. It is gone for the fact that the synapses that process information, are being interfered with.

The pre fontal cortex, the part of our brain that is responsible for short term memory, is rather busy  most of the time. Doing what ? Trying to handle pain it is assumed, as when you take care of the pain, the lobe is not always so active, and the person then retains things, better. They have tested and proved this, using brain scans both before, and after administering pain medications. Then testing recall.

But, even if we do manage to get it into long term memory, there is problem there too, which is tied to sleep issues, as things basically gell in the mind, as we sleep. Whatever was processed during the day, gets “filed” away at night, while we sleep.

And since we do not sleep well,  and have disrupted sleep, we do not “file” things properly, so we have issues trying to retrieve recently stored information. It normally takes a jog to the memory, or some kind of association, in order to find the information, at all.

( Some days I swear I want to find the person inside my head, whose job it is to file things, and fire em ! )

But the bottom line is, the normal routing of desired thing to remember, to short term memory, to long term memory, to retrieval of that memory, doesn’t work reliably anymore. I say reliably, as some days, we seem to have no problem at all, but on others ?? Forget it ! And I mean that, quite literally.

So, what does this tend to do to us ? Anything that cannot be done, right now, almost sets the mind into a state of near panic, if the matter is important. Which of course, does not help matters, one little bit. As now we are stressed as well, which can further impair our memory.

A real nasty state of affairs, anyway you look at it. As the ONLY part of that, we are in control over, is not letting the need to remember, stress us out.

The rest, is pretty much out of our hands, until and unless the medical profession, finally comes up with pain killers that work well for us that we can take on a regular basis, without turning  us into zombies and/or ones that impairs our memory, even further.

Right along with sleeping medications, that allow us to get normal rest. Not just get eight hours in a night mind you, but have normal cycles and sleep patterns, so that things can get “filed” correctly.

Then maybe, just maybe, we might get our memory … back.

More soon….



Cognitive issues and FMS

Well I feel dumb. I took the husband to a testing place today, went away for what was supposed to be, 3 hours. I was gone for two, then had to wait for an hour.

My fault, something so simple, to compute how much time from drop off to 3 hours later and I made a child’s mistake, counting from the first hour, as one, not the hour after as one. Sigh … things like this, just make me wanna scream.

But making such cognitive errors, is rather common with us. It is almost like our IQ just dropped 50 points for the day or something. And when you couple that with our memory issues, it gets even worse.

As yet again,I forgot to stop by the store for fruit, we have been out for 3 days now. Mail to go out to the post office, is still sitting on my table. I have been out 3 times in recent days, it is still sitting there.

I took the number for the GI clinic with me today, to call them and make an appointment, forgot to call them. Are ya getting the drift here … ? Realize, I had major time to kill today and could have gotten all of this done, and remembered, none of it.

Some days, I think I am lucky to remember my own name. Now, knowing why all of this happens, some days, is no comfort, its just frustrating !

Off to chill out, figuratively  and literally. (it was another fry eggs on the sidewalk kinda day..)



Memory issues, general frustrations and FMS

Memory issues and general frustrations. Still fighting the fight with Medicaid, the most recent, they didn’t bother to send me my card this month…again! A bewildering array of phone numbers to call, only to be told, that no you need to talk to X about that. Sigh … ( with a few choice words tossed in for good measure )

Playing phone tag with workers, having to leave a message and hope, I get a call back, taking prescriptions down to medical supply places, only to be told that they need other forms, which no one, not even the social services worker who approved them all, knew about.

I have literally an entire folder full of notes, lists of numbers, that get scratched out and changed dang near every time I call them. Now, you are talking to a woman with Memory issues. Yet my husband watched me do all this and brought up a valid point, a bit of positive in this mire of negative. In that due to having to do all this, and keep track of it all, is basically, forcing my memory, to work. Now it doesn’t work for everything.

I mean last night I “lost” my cigarette case,( moved it, forgot I had moved it, then could not remember WHERE I moved it )  but for this other stuff, the “important” stuff, with enough post it notes and messages all over my desk, I was able to remember to make the calls I needed to make.

I recall a study done by the military, on sleep deprivation, and what they found is the solider could handle the big things, it was all the little stuff, they would forget. But I think it’s more than that, as those studies were done, under total sleep deprivation, as in none at all.

I think that just perhaps, our memories are not as full of holes, as they sometimes seem, but it comes down to a matter, of how important, is the item we have to remember. It is like we do not have room enough, for the little stuff. Just a theory, but I intend to follow it up and see if I can find out just how much fact there is, to such an issue and moreover, is there anything I can do, to improve it.

More soon..




Memory issues and FM

Well, I just spent another hour, answering my email. Now, I can read a lot faster than that 🙂 But the reason it takes so long is simple, my short term memory has gotten so bad, that I have to answer them right now, or I will forget them. If they require that I do anything, that thing has to be done now, if at all possible. If it is not possible, it goes on my “bug me to death”, reminder program, while I am reading the mail, or I will forget to even put it on the program.

There are many theories as to why our short term memory, gets short circuited, but I have my personal favorite. Which is again, the main issue with FM, our nero chemistry in the brain. As what is memory, but a brain function.

What it means in real life terms for us however, is that it can impact our ability to function, considerably.  We do not realize just how much we depend on memory, until it fails us.

It means checking the date, like a mad woman, as looking at a calender is almost pointless.  ( Other than to irritate me ) As the dates do not relate in the mind, as to what day is it ? It can mean I will think that I told someone something, only to find that no, I did not, and I literally cannot remember if really did or not. It means weirdness, like looking at the total on the cash register but by the time you look down to write  a check, it’s just gone ! The total, not the check 🙂

I have known for years now, I have issues with this, but nothing pounded it home to me as much as a recent mental test, given me by SSI. Since I have had a stroke, they wanted to see how it effected my memory and over all mental function, I will be blunt and say I bombed the test, almost entirely, as it almost all depended on memory. Things like who was where in X picture, facial recognition. I got almost all of them, wrong.

Now what is frustrating, is I could remember many details, but would apply them to the wrong image ! Meaning the brain literally cannot keep them in order.

I tell my husband to wait, when he wants to tell me something, when I am in the middle of doing something, as if he speaks, and my attention is diverted, I will totally lose my place, in what I was doing.  It is like having ADHD without having the disorder, as far as recall is concerned. I have to check and re-check the pantry, as I cannot recall whats in there. And so it goes, forever playing a check it upteen times game, with almost everything, as it no longer stays in my head.

Now, understand, I am a college graduate, with a 4.0 grade average, which I did as an adult, so we are not talking that long ago, and I dropped out of school for the main reason, that all of a sudden I could not remember things long enough, to take the tests anymore.

I am a woman who, at one time could and did, keep a dozen bank accounts, and kept them all correct. I ran businesses that required tons of planning and time keeping. Heck, I used to train people how to do it ! I carried a day timer, just as a place to yank paper out, to leave notes for others, as I never wrote much in it, I didn’t have to, as I could remember it all in my head. Gone, all of it !

I think this loss of my minds capacity to fully function is one of the most frustrating aspects of FM. The pain, the fatigue, the sleeplessness and all that goes with that, are almost nothing compared to losing the ability to think.

More soon…