Memory – 9/10/2019

The brain is a miraculous organ. It keeps our bodies functioning even when disease robs us of our memories. We use only a portion of this amazing living computer. Sometimes an accident or illness cause it to glitch.

There are many historical events in my life that I remember with clarity, where I was, what I was doing having lived through 7 decades so far. I was sitting in typing class in high school when the P.A. crackled to life to tell us that our President had been shot, it was the day after my 16th birthday and a party had been planned and then cancelled. I was an occupational counselor in a high school when the space shuttle Challenger blew up over our country on re-entry and all activity stopped as we watched on the handful of TVs in the library. The 9/11/2001 terrorists attacks occurred when I was a high school counselor in a brand new High School and Technology Center with a TV in every classroom and public place in the building. In a city that was a major military hub of the east coast of the USA, many of our student’s having parents working in the Pentagon as we watched horrified as the Twin Towers burned and fell and the Pentagon burned from the strike on it. There are dozen of events etched in my mind, Nixon resigning, Saigon evacuation, Reagan shot, Bobby Kennedy assassinated, the Cuba missile crisis, etc.

But a glitch in the form of a ski fall a few years ago resulting in a concussion, followed by an auto accident this past February with another concussion and now I can’t remember a simple 8 line knitting pattern that I have knit 3 prior times. Every line has to be marked as I knit. It is not a complicated lace, simply remembering which end of the row to increase until the 8th row, binding off some stitches and then repeat. It is frustrating, it is making doing more complex lace pattern almost impossible. Most of the symptoms, such as headache and dizziness are rare now, some simple tasks like releasing the parking brake on the car before backing up have resolved, the occular migraines are much less occurrent, but basic math functions require a calculator, and knitting requires a magnetic marker. I don’t know if these functions will ever fully return or if I will have to keep my knitting simpler and keep my smart phone nearby for it’s calculator function (who still has a real calculator except high school and college math students.) I hope it heals, but at least I have tools to help me through.

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