May 102004

My short term memory is definitely not nearly as good as it was two years ago. My wife (always being the wonderful optimist 😉 thinks it’s just an age thing because she noticed a deterioration in memory at the same age. I have heard others complain of the same thing at my age. This is one of the things that I blame MS first and dismiss the other possibilities – regardless what difference does it make the short term memory definitely isn’t as good. This is noticed most when I leave a room forgetting to bring something with me or leaving something undone. It also happens the other way that I will walk into a room and forget what I came in there for. Mostly it is just misceleanous thoughts throughout the day on things that I want to do, things I want to look up on the ‘net, etc. that get forgotten. When I have these thoughts now I always think (quite realistically) that “what’s the point I’ll forget about it before I can do anything.” Another practical example was yesterday I was taking my son for a walk in a neighborhood I wasn’t familiar with. I tried very hard to always remember the road name we were on so I could call 911 for help if I needed it (not that I thought I would be just to be safe.) I found that very difficult and kept saying the road names over and over in my mind – if I stopped and did something else or thought about something else it was usually gone. Yuck!

On the other hand I have made some changes that have really helped. I almost always have a cell phone (either work or personal) so if I think of something and can’t do it right then I will call and leave myself a message to jog my memory later. I also try to carry a pen and paper to jot things down – which works pretty well but the cell phone is much better in the car. I keep considering getting a PDA and even went to look at them today but once again came to the conclusion that they are too expensive. I am not satisfied with my current setup and it fails me sometimes so I am thinking about getting a day timer or something like that to help me out. It would be a lot cheaper than a PDA but would get the job done. I just desperately need something that I constantly carry around. The big drawback to that is the size since it won’t easily fit into my pocket and makes it less portable. The money issue is going to win out for now though. Besides a PDA with all the cool gadgets is almost as much as a laptop – Yikes!!!

I did some reading on the National MS Society pages and found the following links helpful. I am definitely not going to go and see a specialist at this point to help me with my memory I’m just going to work around the problem.

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