Weak Ankles and Memory Loss

    Stroke brain is becoming a really irritating issue.  I’m not sure if I have memory loss or what type of memory issues I have but whatever it is (stroke brain is all I can come up with), it’s really getting in my way.

   This morning Kasper’s alarm woke me up and I immediately started cussing because I had forgotten to set my alarms for the return to school.  I dragged myself out of bed, rushed Skas out of bed, made lunch and gathered everything together for Kasper to make sure the boys had what they needed with them at school.  Kasper then called me to check the school schedules posted on the board.  Apparently I threw away Skas’ schedule thinking his vacation was over today and it’s not and I had forgotten.  Oddly enough, JJ’s school schedule says they go back to school today but they were closed.  It’s a good thing Kasper drops them off and not me, could you imagine the panic that would have overtaken me?! I’m positive I would have bursted into tears had I pulled up to an empty parking lot.  I mean, I can barely take an off-schedule nap without waking up in a panic for one reason or another.

   The other day I was doing laundry.  I cleaned out the dryer and lint trap first– everything has to be done in the same steps every time or else I will get confused.  For some reason, I put half a load of dirty laundry in the washer and half in the dryer.  What’s worse is that I even had to go find extra clothes to fill the washer because it looked so low.  Hello, it was low because the other half of the load was in the dryer.

    One time I left a load of laundry in the washer for two days.  Luckily, it was mostly rags so I could throw away the mildewed items without guilt.

    Kasper and I are always arguing because he’ll tell me plans he made or we’ll plan an afternoon out together but when it comes time to execute those plans I’m like:download

I simply don’t remember making any plans or agreeing to plans.  I don’t remember the conversations until mid fight when he says something I remember saying.  It’s embarrassing and frustrating.

   I forgot to give my kids lunch a few days ago so I let them eat a bunch of yogurt and cheese sticks a little over an hour before dinner (this would usually be a big no in our house, I try to minimize snacking before meals).  I  wasn’t being lazy, I wasn’t stressed or busy.  I just…forgot.

    Things like the above examples are generally forgivable. Forgetting one lunch for your kids isn’t exactly super rare and laundry isn’t something the brain couldn’t easily confuse if there’s a lot on a person’s mind.  It’s unfortunate it doesn’t take much “else” to be on my mind for me to appear careless and inattentive.  I feel like there’s a lot of blank space in my head and it’s not the kind of space that is vacant, waiting for a thoughtful occupant.  This space is hollow and I can not only feel it making space useless when I know I’m forgetting something but sometimes it’s like I can see directly into its void.

  Last night, for example, I turned away from the stove to do something and there was nothing there. Nothing. Nothing.  There’s so much nothing it’s not even dead.  Like an impossibly tangible nothing.  Like looking into the dark and you know there’s nothing there yet you feel like there should be something.  It’s frustrating and depressing.

   And then there are times where I’m completely airheaded like Christmas day.  We went to my in-laws but because of my injured toe I wore the open brace. My toe was still swollen and because I can’t control my foot’s movements I didn’t think I could safely squeeze my foot into my shoe without hurting my toe more—plus, I’d have to fit my AFO in there, too?

Mine looks a lot like this only with more soft padding inside, more straps and a metal rod up the back.

   The last few steps to the car were weird and I knew something was wrong.  I couldn’t figure it out.  I readjusted the straps thinking maybe my foot wasn’t in there right and that’s why I was walking kind of bowl legged on the left (like hypersupination of the foot extending up to the knee [super loose definition here]). By the time I got into my in-laws house I had to take that brace off.  My shin was swollen from how tight I had the straps to keep my foot in place.  My ankle throbbed until I removed the brace.  I went home in socks even though it was raining out.

   It took me until this morning to realize that the pain in my ankle bothering me since just after Christmas is a result of that damned brace.  I then realized I shouldn’t have been walking in that brace.  There’s no support with it.  Duh, it’s meant for bed and resting.  It’s to keep your foot from dropping unnaturally  while in a relaxed position. This is why I wear a super hard plastic polypropylene blend (Google it) AFO when I leave my house.  I have a weak ankle and need this extra support.  How could I have forgotten this?! And how could I forget I wore that stupid brace on Christmas?  All week I’ve been rubbing my ankle, manually rotating that foot to loosen it up and I thought it was my regular joint pain even though I’ve not had as much discomfort in my other left joints as I’ve been experiencing in that ankle.

Sometimes I feel like my life has become one long, awkward and uncomfortable brain fart.  

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3 thoughts on “Weak Ankles and Memory Loss

  1. I have great respect and compassion for all that you do, and the courage to write about it. When I was 31, married with three young children, my mind stopped – almost like blowing a fuse – I couldn’t do anything of the everyday things most moms take for granted, like making Kraft dinner, or driving, let alone remembering schedules. It was a nightmare, from which I did recover with small steps.
    Now here I am, 57, and have inflammation on the brain which is effecting my memory and executive functioning. I know what you mean about the “nothing”, and it is scary at times. However, I have complete faith in the brain and its ability to heal – neuroplasticity I think it’s called.
    Hang in there – your children have one heck of a brave Mom.


      1. Absolutely. A doctor/friend once told me that in every prognosis there is always an unknown – he called it the ‘x factor’ (not like the television series) but the unknown elements that the human spirit infuses into any condition.

        Liked by 1 person

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