Friday, January 8, 2010

Sidetracked

Posted on/at 3:23 PM by The Goddess

It's well documented that fibromyalgia and lupus can cause cognitive dysfunction. It's what we lupies call "brain fog". I've been struggling with this issue for years, and seem to be getting spacier as time passes.

Today was a doozy!

While puttering around, I noticed that a leaf had gotten knocked off of one of my African violets. Since the parent plant is looking puny, I decided to root the leaf and start a second plant. I set up a rooting cup and then went to look for a Sharpie pen to label it with.

Three hours later, I saw the leaf again, sitting wilted next to the cup. What on earth?

Let me see if I can reconstruct what happened, as far as my fuzzy recollection can recall.

I went into the bedroom to where I keep my markers. They are in the box with my geocaching supplies. That's where things started to go wrong.

While I was retrieving the pen, I spotted a nanocache (a glorified film canister) that was all ready to be placed in the wild. It reminded me that I had to go do some maintenance on a cache I placed earlier this week. The local moderator wanted me to move it slightly. So I popped the nanocache into my pocket and went to go take care of that while there was a break in the weather. All thoughts of planting violets had completely fled my brain.

I wandered the neighborhood for a while, made a half-hearted attempt at finding a couple of other local caches while I was out (with no luck), moved the problem cache and hid the new nano. Spent some time exploring the local heritage park since I was in the neighborhood. On the way home, I tromped through the woods, collected waypoint data for future cache hides, collected a sample of a neat plant I'd never seen before, and got muddy. The rain started back up.

As I got to my front door, I spotted this in my front garden. My poor garden guy has a slug coming out nof his nose. No wonder he looks alarmed! Had to stop and take photos.


While I was in the garden, I transplanted the plant specimen I collected in the woods. Cleaned and refilled the bird bath, and picked up some of the clutter that accumulates around the front door.

Eventually, I made it inside and went to the sink to wash the mud off my hands. There, on the counter, was my poor violet leaf. Three hours had passed since I went in search of a pen.

This is by no means an uncommon occurrence for me. I spend many hours a day trying to remember why I'm standing in the middle of a particular room. Getting even simple tasks done can be nearly impossible some days, because I've lost much of my ability to focus. Rick regularly nags me about going back to work, but there's just no way.

I'm perpetually baffled, sometimes so badly it starts to scare me. Wikipedia describes brain fog as follows;

"Cognitive dysfunction (or brain fog) is defined as unusually poor mental function, associated with confusion, forgetfulness and difficulty concentrating."

That's the understatement of the year. Today's episode, while one of my more extreme ones, isn't anything out of the ordinary for me. This is how I spend my days. Most of the time it doesn't bother me too terribly much, but there's always a worry that I'll forget something more vital than violet leaves.

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