What? When?

Yesterday proved me right about things just not going the right way for me this week, there were several small and silly things which found me just feeling like what is the point of trying to anything as it was just bound to go wrong. Small things frustrate everyone, but when you aren’t too good on your feet, standing at the bin scraping leftover porridge into it, for it to somehow land on the floor, takes on a much bigger significance. Especially as when you bend over to pick it up, successfully without actually landing on the floor yourself, for it to somehow reappear back at your feet half a second after you have safely returned to vertical, well frustrating is possibly too small a word for it. I knew I had things planned throughout the day and I was behind with my normal routine, but they all had to happen, so when I stupidly clicked on something on screen to get rid of it and realised all too late what I had done, pushed me just that little bit too far. Suddenly I was bombarded by advert pages and my virus protection going nuts, along with tears of pure frustration with maybe a touch of tiredness thrown in there for good measure, I had been invaded by adware and malware. It was one of those moments when I just wanted to kick myself, curl up and give up even trying to do anything else. What was the point, clearly I was doomed to fail, so OK it isn’t that hard to get rid of, but it is one of those annoying things that means you have to spend time running correction programs and rebooting your PC, often more than once. When you feel you are already behind on what you are doing, something else to deal with isn’t just annoying, it’s life draining. I may still be totally in love with my PC, but I really wish other people would leave it alone, well not just mine but everyone else’s, it is one of those things that seems so obvious, but when your mind starts to slip, having good antivirus software is essential as mistakes like the one I made is just all too easy to do and in some cases can actually make your PC virtually unusable.

Adam didn’t come home for lunch yesterday as the weather was somewhat wild, to be honest, the way I was feeling at lunchtime, his phone call to say he wasn’t going to come down, wasn’t met with my usual downhearted feeling. I hate to say it but I was relieved, I do love him coming home for lunch, but there are days like yesterday where I am in such a muddle, that not spending half an hour talking is actually a good thing. Clearly, a lot of the stupid mistakes I was making was due to lack of true concentration, which by the way is one of many forms there are. I know most will think concentration is concentration, but it’s not. Yesterday was the loss of the concentration we all have throughout life, just making stupid mistakes as we are trying to do things too fast or without really thinking about it, but then there are the growing loss of concentration that is truly a sign that something is wrong. The first signs are just an increase when it isn’t just the odd occasion or an odd day where we can’t manage to achieve what we should, you slowly become aware of the fact that you are making errors all over the place and having to double check almost everything that you do. For me the first signs were at work, I was handing in reports that had errors in them, errors that would never have been there before. It was actually the reason that I started to teach myself to program, I had been using macro’s for ages, but they were no longer enough, I needed to get things right before I lost my job.

I was lucky as I discovered that I was entitled under some European fund to have someone come to work with me, to help with tasks I was having difficulty with. For about 10 months I had a lady come to the office every morning just to double check what I was doing and to distribute the reports around the office. I was lucky as at the point it all started to fall apart, my Neurologist decided that I was suitable for the chemotherapy, the drug they used was mitoxantrone and it was a miracle. In just two treatments, three months apart, my life turned around and I was given a second chance, everything including my concentration was restored. Unfortunately, it is a once only therapy, 2 years of the drug is all they allow as it damages your heart to have any more. It was, in fact, the drug that managed to slow things down but not forever, things still progress, just slower. Mistakes eventually did reappear, but by then I had everything running on bespoke programs so work was saved for a while, but mistakes happening all the time in your everyday life is what I would call the second level of concentration, the third level is more serious especially if you are still working. Level three is when you don’t just make mistakes, you drift off and are unable to complete tasks in the time they should take, simply because you are away doing something else. That inability to stay focused on one task may sound small, but if you spend a quarter of every hour, doing things that don’t need doing at the point, well I am sure you can imagine what that eventually does. It was at this point that I also started to find reading a problem, I would frequently find myself not just having to reread the last couple of lines, but paragraphs and pages, add in a failing memory and the impact on everyday life just grows. The fourth and final stage, well I say final, as it is the one where I am now, is not only drifting off but drifting off to do things of no importance to anything. I have found myself web surfing for nothing, just jumping around on links, playing games and fiddling with things on my desk that somehow catch my eye and my attention. No matter how much I have planned for my day, I now have to build in room for me to just waste time. I get the odd day where I can stay focused and when I do, well it’s amazing how little time my daily routine really should take, I waste about two hours every day, with no idea later what I was doing to lose it.

To me, the worst part right now is when I lose track of conversations, when my brain has wandered away somewhere and I suddenly don’t know what Adam is talking about, I have missed most of it. The same happens with the TV and when I am writing, the possibility of just completing something is limited. I know it will like everything else just keep getting worse, I like most people like to lie to myself, by saying this is as bad as it will get, but I know it will. I guess what makes it worse is when my lack of short term memory joins in, then I really stand no chance. We can be watching a TV program and talking about it, then suddenly I stop dead, I can’t remember what we are talking about, or the names of the people who are right there in front of me on the TV set, once again they have ganged up against me. It’s now a daily occurrence and what stage five will be, well I’m not sure, probably when I can’t keep my mind on just being me.

Please read my blog from 2 years ago today – 22/10/12 – Dip 

I crashed again last night. That about says how I feel this morning, short and to the point. I felt it closing in as the evening went on and by 10 o’clock I was almost crawling to my bed. Sunday night TV is to me at it’s best at this time of year, I can more than happily watch the BBC from the evening news right on, which…..

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