Brown honest truck

Remember the three words above. You will be asked to repeat them at the end of this post. These are the words the doctor gave me at the beginning of the visit to check memory loss.

I went to seem him yesterday to figure out what we can do to improve my memory and all that epilespy stuff. The doctor reminded me very much of that strange lawyer guy on Ally McBeal--the curly haired, awkward one who always had a problem with his nose whistling? You know who I mean! Anyway, mild-mannered and nerdy, but very nice. He asked me about the seizures and a few other questions about my life and work and then told me that he thinks I was misdiagnosed. He said it in a kind of dramatic fashion with lots of pauses. "Well....from what I'm hearing...I think you may gotten the wrong diagnosis...I" pause pause pause "A brain tumor!" No, he didn't say that, but I was wondering, is this good or bad news? He might be...complex partial seizures instead of simple partial seizures. He quickly followed up by saying that one isn't worse than the other, just different. Then he back-tracked and gave me what he thought was a "pretty good analogy" for what a seizure is. I imagine he came up with this one day years ago and has refined it over the last decade:

"Picture this: You're at a football game. A Penn State game, if you will! And there's a microphone in the center of the field. Now, in each of the sections of the stadium, there are all these separate conversations going on, each meaningful in their own way. That's like your brain--your brain is doing all different things at once--allowing you to blink, to breath, to sit up-right--but each different thing the brain is doing doesn't necessarily get communicated to all of the other functions. When a seizure happens, it's like a couple of people in section E of the stadium starting the wave--it catches on, stops those other conversations, and makes the stadium/brain do only one thing."

I think that makes sense. The example he was giving was for a grand mal seizure. The type I have only effects part of my brain and the rest of my body is cognizant of what is happening at the moment, which is why I can talk during a seizure and say, I'm having the de ja vu.

This is a better article, because it makes what I may have sound almost intelligent.

Here is what I get to do on Monday afternoon:

He told me that if I'd like, we could have me wear the EEG garb home (under a hat) and we could monitor my brain activity for an entire weekend. I said, Hey! Thanks, but NO THANKS!

As part of the examination, I had to touch my nose and then his finger again and again and walk across the room heel,toe, heel toe. I had to walk on my tiptoes. You'd be surprised how hard it is to do some of these things when you know you're being evaluated.

At the end, he asked me the three words. I remembered them. Then he said how it's not really a very good indication of memory loss after all. I mean, I can remember words and ideas, but actual events are what I forget. Maybe I have to be better at keeping a daily journal of this stuff--not here, because it would be boring, but just some kind of record keeping. And then when I die, all of my friends will find notebooks and notebooks and notebooks of lists like: Lucky Charms for breakfast. Typed letters. Surfed the Web. Lunch: California wrap. Very tasty but not as good as crispy chicken. Cat is the same. Dinner: peanuts. Bedtime: 11:05 p.m.

This is what we did on Friday. Liz and Chris came over and painted our entire living room all red. I did nothing. Zena did nothing. Kali and Paul came over and cheered on our guests who were doing house labor. That's Liz to the left, Kali hiding in the back, and Mr. Chris sitting on our hot plastic thrift store granny couch. They must be thanked profusely. Liz does an excellent job and is for hire, if you're interested.