Saturday, 5 February 2011

How short is short term memory?

Okaasan's short term memory is patchy.
But HOW it is patchy is fascinating. Well, it is to me anyway.

Yesterday 2 prime examples:

In the morning I poked my head into her room to give her "Goodmorning!" chat and hand her the newspaper. She had her mouth full of something and couldn't speak...just waved and chokingly giggled. But 20 minutes later when I was in the kitchen again, she came out to apologize and laugh. I was surprised that she'd remembered the incident - because sometimes of course I get 2 or 3 morning greetings as she has forgotten that she's already met me in the kitchen.

In the evening we sat after dinner having a big discussion about whether a bag of dried fish which was a year old and actually contained fish with mold-colonies growing on them could possibly be eaten. Yujiro called in the middle of that, so we both chatted to him on the phone a bit.
So 10 minutes later I started clearing the table and Okaasan picked up the bag of fish again....these are good for making stock...yes...but they are mouldy aren't they...MOULDY???!! Really?? These are mouldy???

So strange.
Why/How would she remember not being able to speak with her mouth full - but NOT remember a whole 10 minutes or more of chat about the fish and the stock and the mould and the Eat by Date?

Is it because the first example is something she is actively doing/not doing? And a slight embarrassment feeling attached? And the second is talking about something - although she was handling the fish and deciding which bits could still be used?

I really don't know. But it is interesting to see the Short Term Memory loss in action.

All ok here otherwise, although I feel I have no spare time really. I just get up and set about the day like a responsible adult - juggling the balls of Work/Cats/Okaasan/Shopping/Cooking/Uni Spaghetti's Problems with the Post Office.
Okaasan is getting out for afternoon walks and coming home just about on time...and she is even doing the washing up in the kitchen...sometimes.

I really do think that somehow she is "better"...more "alert" when it is just me caring for her. Maybe she feels she has to connect more and make an effort, whereas with Yujiro she can just be passive. Maybe all the little "softcare" things of my popping my head into her room and comments about the weather/cats/food/Tv are like oil in the grease of her brain? Yujiro (nice guy that he is) doesn't give her much incidental contact when he is here - mealtimes yes, but apart from that he leaves her alone in her room with the TV and bits of paper.
But in desperate attempts to keep her in a good mood give her little bits and pieces of chat during a day as I come and go. And of course, mealtimes with Okaasan and me are more full of Okaasan chatting because I get her onto a story and let her run with it. Seems to work.

Friday morning students were absent this week - so I grabbed the chance to ask a friend to go with me to the eye doctor locally - I STILL have a burst blood vessel in my left eye, and I think both eyes have yellowy whites. A month of bloody eyes can't be good.
Absolutely sure my Japanese doesn't stretch to eye care and Masae-san came with me. Actually she is part of a group locally of interpreters who do Medical maybe good practice!
Thankfully, the jokiest  doctor in Hokkaido told me that the blood is maybe cos I strained my body too much (snow clearing? boxes from England? heavy cat?) and the yellow hue is natural aging. Have some eyedrops and don't worry.

Relief. Don't need any more health problems.

Onwards into the weekend.
Have to input my January earnings into the tax software, have to sort out photographs from England....would like to maybe meet up with a woman I know thru a travel website. Need to call a friend or two.

Oh. And Okaasan.

 And cats.
They came into our life exactly one year ago on the Bean Throwing Ceremony Day, Feb. 4th.

1 comment:

  1. I like those cats! Short term memory, really weird stuff that is...