Anecdotal Evidence

March 8, 2006 at 8:51 PM (Cerebral Palsy)

I’ve noticed something interesting about myself and a couple of other past aquaintances who all have cerebral palsy to varying degrees, but have no matching mental deficits. (we all grew up prior to personal computing, speech recognition, word boards or other similar assistive devices.)

We all had similar stories that once school got hard enough to take notes we tried. And tried.
And tried. And then partially gave up…we couldn’t take notes fast enough to write everything down.

We all also have pretty sharp memories. Some of my able bodied relatives once said to me, “How *is* it that you remember all this stuff?” and I (and my past aquaintances) are astonished at how much “the rest of them” seem to forget completely.

We all talked this out and came to the conclusion that we might have unwittingly “trained” our memories to pick up the slack when we couldn’t keep up the pace of the written notes…

One former aquaintance has/had a nearly eidetic memory, calling up conversations and passages from books word for word…which made it excruiciating to argue with them, because all the past exchanges were it seems, neatly filed away in that head to be used if needed.

The downside of this of course is that if you aren’t used to detailed notetaking or shorthand, but need it in your work, it’s difficult to try to teach yourself something new during midlife

I am a former singer and music lover, and even there…I have pitch, I learn very quickly by ear, but reading music is just a forest of dots to me. I have to hear it and store it in my head to reproduce it correctly.

Anyone else out there with writing limitations and a sharp mind notice a similar experience?

I’d be interested to know.

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Orders for the Doctors

March 8, 2006 at 7:25 PM (Doctors)

You know it’s going to be one of *those* days when

1. You’ve told the specialists Intrepid Office Staff *twice* now that

2. You have Cerebral Palsy

3. You’re considerably overweight

4. You have carpal tunnel in your wrists, which makes it difficult for your wrists to be weight bearing substitutes for your legs anymore.

All of which means, you might have trouble with the exam table.

The staff is only partially prepared with the conundrum you present when you arrive.

They were game, and we adapted some things….one of which did leave me holding myself up on handles like a male gymnnast on the horse, bearing my weight on my wrists…for quite a little bit of time…..Owwwwwwwwww.

And then, the video camera had a short…

Intrepid Staff: “No. It’s not working. The picture comes in and goes away. One of these plugs back here…”
Doctor: Well, we can do without this. Just relax (???!!!)

Intrepid Staff: “Well it was working and then”

Me, prone and half dressed on the exam table: ” You’ve got a short.”

They turn and stare: How in the hell do I know?

Me, insistent, prone and half dressed on the exam table: “Trust me, you’ve got a short.”

They held a plug up connecting the video monitor and voila, as long as they held it a picture was generated, but if they let it sag a bit…

Them: “Well, geeze you’re right. We’ve got a short.”

So then I got to watch my insides and wonder why it looked like a Discovery Channel Special

It’s my one mechanically minded attribute.

Ever since I was able to baby the Magnavox 1961 Black and White TV and Stereo to last until 1978 when neither of my parents could coax a picture out of the old girl…I could by careful babying of the ancient tuner.

Or the stereo speaker was less than optimal, but turning the wiring just so….created the sound.

Or the VCR that argued with everyone *but* me when it came time to set an ongoing show to record.

And since the linear, math based side of my brain, well, let’s just say it sucks and leave it at that.

I know when something has a short. Or what buttons to push.

and I can’t explain why, because the why means I have to know about the physical makeup of wiring or electronics and I don’t.

I just know.

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