CDC Symptom Diary Card

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Land of the Lost

Does anyone remember the first Saturday morning TV show called the "Land of the Lost"?  It opened with a dad and his two kids on a raft going down a waterfall and arriving in a land of ancient times.  Dinosaurs and reptiles and really big strawberries abound!  I feel like I am in the land of the "lost" still.  I know I've been harping on this chemo brain stuff but it's really annoying me.

First of all, every time I go to see my counselor, I get lost on the way there.  And to make it worse, because  I just moved, I go in the wrong direction all the time.

This IS Seattle though, so I don't take all the blame.  For those of you who don't know what it's like to drive in Seattle, it's a maze.  There are a lot of lakes and bridges and hills and there are no grids out here.  Streets are windy and go in all anyway.

I had another cognitive test done at Fred Hutchinson a few days ago, got lost on the way there, got lost in the building, and I've been to that campus only a million times.

Had to go downtown last night for work training, got lost on the way there, got lost on the way home.

I am having trouble with my new job because I can't remember how to search on their computer to research answers and solutions and information for my clients.  That is really worrisome for me...........not good.

It's so hard to explain that I can't "find' information quickly.......and then I forget how I got there.

It's like the homing device in my brain went kerplunk.  I'm sure there's a specific part of our brain that recalls visual tracking, I should remember that, but I don't.

Before chemo, my directional memory was awesome.  I am not gloating.  I used to drive all over the place and rarely got lost.  Plus, at work I was the person other's relied upon to remember appointments and important deadlines, etc.  I was a super organized person.

Now, I can't remember to make my to do list and when I make my to do list, I forget to use it.  Crazy.

Then, oddly enough, during the test, I was good at remembering numbers.  Weird.

I guess my concern is really about being able to stay in a good standing at work.  I had no idea that I would have such a hard time learning new things.  I was such a good student in college, and was able to memorize all kinds of things, no matter what kind of job I had.  I even did some community theatre for a bit, and that required an above average memory.  Sooooooooooo, all I can say is that chemo did a number on my noggin'.

I do have hope though that this will continue to improve over time.  But if I forget to do something or forget a name or forget an event, please forgive me.  I am not offended by reminders either, and welcome them as a matter of fact.

Like, the other day, after my cognitive testing, I met with a teal sister for coffee before getting mom at dialysis.  My friend asked me how my day was and I couldn't remember where I had been.  I laughed and said "I don't remember............wait..........oh ...........This is funny but I forgot that I went to do a memory test this morning".  I just laugh at myself now, but when it comes to work, that isn't funny..........aagh

Life could be worse...................I love you all!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Brain image compliments of


  1. What you wrote could be something that I wrote. I haven't gotten too lost yet but I can't find things , can't remember the names of things and seem to use a multitude of words to describe an object in the hopes that whoever I am talking to will respond with the name. I laugh at myself most times but I get frustrated and upset sometimes too.

    You are right though.Life could be worse.

  2. Hi Dee,

    That whole naming this is so true. Playing Pictionary is a whole new game now....instead of "chrystal ball" all I could come up with were things like "predictor ball" and "future thing"...dragola. I say "thingy" all the time now.


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