Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Words and Other Problems…………

I am having a really hard time with words lately.  They just do not seem to want to be there when I need to say them.  I know that many of you have this same problem and it is really frustrating.

I guess we really started noticing what words are when we were learning to talk.  “No” was a big one.  “Hungry” another big want.  Probably the two biggest ones at that age were “I” and “want”.  Most of these words come fairly easily to most people, but sometimes I cannot think of them no matter how hard I try.  Sound stupid?  Then you don’t have the cognitive problems that most of us with MS seem to develop.

I started noticing this big time when I was still working.  I worked in an office environment at my last job where there were lots of people.  Every morning I would go to my desk and the same people would be sitting around me.  Some mornings I was OK, but many mornings I would say good morning to the girls and could not remember their names.  It was very embarrassing and frustrating to say the least.  They usually did not notice, but it caused me a lot of heartache and fright.

That was about the time that I first noticed that I walked into walls a lot.  I would be walking down the hall and bouncing off the walls.  I did not connect the two back then, but now know that they are some of the signs of the onset of MS.

Most of the time, I don’t worry about walking into walls too much.  I am usually close enough to something that the short bounce doesn’t hurt too much.  The only time I really panic is in open spaces when I can’t immediately reach out to hold on to something.  That has not happened recently, since my husband is always there to grab on to.

I do notice that I am struggling more and more to “find” words.  In just general conversation, I strain my brain to find the word that I am trying to say.  Sometimes at night, in that quiet time before sleep, I get nervous thinking I am maybe into the early onset of Alzheimer’s or dementia.  I often wonder how many times we blame MS for something that has nothing to do with it.  Maybe it is a basket we use to throw everything into so we won’t have so much stuff to think about.

I wish I had an answer for some of my questions and some of your questions.  Most of the doctors that we go to do not seem have many more answers than we do.  I guess we will just have to deal with what we have and make the best of it.

Remember flash cards in school?  I am wondering if I put my most commonly used words on flash cards and carried them with me all the time it would help.  That way, when I could not get my brain to find a word, at least I might find it on one of my cards.  I think it is worth a try………even if I don’t have the word I am looking for maybe I will have something close to it…………….I wonder if a rhyming word would work………or a color……or a number…….the possibilities are endless!!!


Muffie said...

I think you talk about the flash cards in jest, but it may be a good idea. Maybe a small notebook with common words listed with pictures? Does your cellphone have a device to store these words? Sometimes stress can cause you to go blank. If you're always worrying about forgetting a word, maybe you're so anxious that you do it to yourself?
I went through a brief period where I was doing that, but I was always able to find a synonym to insert. I know it was stress causing it and now it's gone.
Also, don't get all uptight about it being Alzheimer's -- that too can cause stress.

Janie said...

I think that is part of it. I get so worried about holding up my end of the conversation that I stress myself out. I just need to learn to breathe deep and take my time.