An up close, in depth, comprehensive look at multiple sclerosis “cog fog”
First things first with today’s blog post- please don’t sue me. I did not come up with the name of multiple sclerosis “cog fog.” I found it on the internet on two different sites and so I have no clue who to attribute this clever phrase too.
But it certainly fits to describe when your MS cognitive difficulties collide with ongoing brain fog. Thus I am using this expression to help others understand one aspect of “cog fog.”
And yes, I know that I said this was a comprehensive look at “cog fog” and yet, I am only focusing on one aspect of it. That is lesson number 1. When you have “cog fog” you often have no idea what you’re talking about.
Anyway, tomorrow is the day when we will have to change our clocks. This is incredibly stressful for me. While autumn is my favorite time of year and I actually don’t mind winter, this clock changing thing is horrible.
What is it all about anyway? Everyone grumbles and complains about it getting darker earlier, (I think that is what happens.) Why can’t we just leave it to the mighty guy upstairs to tell us when it is time to settle down for the evening and put our PJ’s on? Why stress about it and then try to direct the hour of the setting sun?
I have adorable little relatives in the western part of the country who don’t change their clocks; which is a good thing because they don’t know how to tell time. But their parents and the rest of their state don’t change them either.
This makes the time difference even more confusing when it changes in my area twice a year. I can’t even remember the time difference once a year. Is the whole concept of some parts of the country manually changing the time while other parts don’t just a huge conspiracy to keep me from calling the little ones hourly just to hear them say, “I wub you, auntie.”
The next stressful thing about this process is getting it right. I can never remember if I am supposed to move the clock an hour forward or an hour backwards. Right up until the minute I do it, I am still confused.
Plus, they “the official people in the know,” say you should change the clock at midnight. What if you are not up at midnight?
Here’s what happens. I call my mom twenty times that evening and ask her to remind me what I am supposed to do. Exasperated, she will say, “Yvonne, in the fall you move the clock back one hour. So if it is midnight, you would move the clock back to eleven. In the spring you do the opposite.”
“Ok, I will write it down so I don’t forget.”
And then I will forget to write the info down and will call her again.
I try to always do the right thing when I am supposed to do it. So to be prepared, I turn the clocks back one hour before I fall asleep, whatever time that happens to be.
Then I wake up for a bathroom run and to make sure I am not confused in the morning, turn the clock back an hour again. When I wake up for my crack of dawn bathroom run, I don’t remember if I have changed the clocks already and if I did, did I move the hands back one hour, or ahead one hour? And was that the direction I was supposed to move them in?
The sun outside doesn’t help because the whole point of changing the clocks is to change what time the sun does its sun thing…
To make matters even more confusing for my MS brain, in this new electronic age some things change themselves. I can just never remember which.
The cable box has a time different from my clock- which is right? My cell phone has an altogether different time, does it change itself? How does it know what the actual time is?
What about the microwave? Who tells the microwave what time it is? And whoever does that, why don’t they tell the stove the time as well?
Next in sorting this mess out, I turn on the TV news. They will definitely have the right time.
Except, what time zone are they broadcasting from? Are they in Eastern, Central, Mountain, Pacific, Oceanic, Astrophysic or what? And does that time zone change its clocks back or forward or not at all?
You would think I could rely on the local news, they MUST have the accurate time. Except I just heard that our local news stations was bought by Fox Television and aren’t they in LA?
So you without MS “cog fog” can see how something relatively simply to the rest of the world (or state or time zone or whatever,) can become completely overwhelming to someone with MS. After stressing about this over and over I wind up calling my mom in the morning to see what time it is.
“It’s 6AM and it’s Sunday. Go back to bed!” she abruptly and groggily tells me.
“Is that 6AM yesterday time or 6AM today time?”
Finally, someone helped me to see the REAL importance of this event.
“The fall time change means you get an extra hour of sleep..”
Now THAT is something I can appreciate.
I love sleep and I will take all the extra hours I can get. In order to better appreciate the extra sleep this year, I have decided not to change anything, at least not until late the next day. At that time I will call someone and ask them to tell me what time it is.
Can someone please give me their number? Funny how the operator tells me my mother’s number has been disconnected….
And now for our DWTS moment- Thank you, thank you, thank you Jack for finally mentioning the fatigue! I have been waiting all season for you to bring up MS related fatigue and how that has got to be affecting you. Of course, when you did, your partner Cheryl Burke did not get it. BUT, she did say the key words, “you have to tell me how you feel so we can be on the same page.”
Oh, wouldn’t it be wonderful if all the people in our lives were to put that statement out to us and really mean it? Cheryl must have really meant it because she and Jack then went on to dance an incredible Jive!
And the biggest shock of the evening- Ozzy looked like he actually knew what was going on!
Memorable MS quote of the show- “I feel like I am turning into a zombie,” Jack.
I can relate Jack; I can definitely relate.
Vote for Jack Osbourne and his partner Cheryl Burke by calling 1-800-868-3402 up to 60 minutes after the show on Monday nights or by logging onto ABC.com or Facebook.com/votedwts up to 24 hours after.
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