Sleep deprivation is most certainly linked to memory loss….and I have the miles on my car to prove it!
Last night I experienced “restless leg syndrome” in my legs, my feet, my knees, my arms, my wrists, my hands…even my tongue kept having this weird tingling sensation. I wrestled with the sheets for awhile, did the Icy Heat thing. When that didn’t work I added the heating pad even though the directions explicitly warn consumers NOT to pair heating pads with the medicine. But I had more restless parts than heating pads, so I got up. Walked a bit. Stretched. (At 1:15 am, of course) Applied Aloe Vera gel in hopes that the cooling sensation would override the restless one. When that didn’t work I dug out the lovely compression hose that the nurse put on me after I had my surgery. Walked some more. Tossed. Twisted. Kicked off the covers. Pulled the covers back. Flopped over on my side. Flipped to my back. Got up and walked the floor some more. Considered duct taping myself to the wall so I could try to sleep standing up, but I was afraid the tape wouldn’t stick and I’d end up falling and breaking something. Finally, sometime after 3 or 4, I got a couple hours of sleep.
And woke up with apparent Alzheimer’s. I forgot what day it is. (Wednesday, I think). This was one of those “Tick Tock” days, as my daughter says. I had a doctor’s appointment, rushed home, rushed through making a quick lunch, rushed out the door to get my daughter to the movie theater (The Lorax) “field trip” with her theater classmates…
…and promptly forgot if I turned off the stove before I left.
I knew that I TOLD myself to turn it off. I just couldn’t remember actually following through on that self-command.
To understand the significance of why this mattered to me, consider this: my grandmother burned down her kitchen TWICE by leaving a pot of grease on a stove whose burners were not turned off. My grandmother never intended to forget — that’s why we say she FORGOT. I knew that with the time crunch I was in, it was entirely possible that I accidentally left the burner on and the pan with melted butter on the burner.
So. The movie theater was about half an hour away from home. I dropped off the girl and drove back home — in the rain — uphill — both ways (ok, just kidding on that part) to check that the stove was turned off.
Yes, I am happy to report, the stove was OFF.
Obviously my memory was OFF, too.
Thirty more minutes drive time in the car, in the rain, and I managed to catch the tail end of the movie before sweeping my daughter off to the ice rink for her lessons. A couple hours later, I drove home in a sleepy fog and promptly forgot (again) what day it is: trash day. Thankfully I saw other people’s trash cans sitting out. Then I (almost) forgot to replace my hormone patch, which would have likely led to even more forgetful…dare I say….SENIOR…moments?
I guess I’m just finally acting like my hair color, and I’ve decided that SILVER is the new blonde. No more hiding it, folks. I’ve lived forty-something years and have the memory gaps — and silver hairdo — to prove it! The shining moment for me was when I realized that the one pesky hair that grows out of a follicle under my chin (it’s just ONE, brother of mine, if you are reading this: NO, I DO NOT NEED TO SHAVE. Just pluck!) — is no longer dark brown. Nope. I didn’t even see it this time around because it grew back a lovely shade of white.
Just kidding on the lovely. Not on the white.
So now I figure that age spots, wrinkles, and reading glasses are not far behind. I will have to hold on for the ride and enjoy it. Well, at least if I can remember where I’m going.
What was I talking about again?