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scottm

Back in a class

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I set myself a challenge to take the advanced navigation class I hadn't had a chance to take before the stroke. I'm on my 3rd week and struggling but moving fprward. It's all based on basic math, no trig or advanced math but I'm having the hardest time framing the problem before I start solving it. 90 - 22 turns into 5 minutes of refreshing myself what the numbers mean and how to apply the -. Then I can start.

 

It's hard to explain to someone how hard it is...well also knowing I used to do some pretty advanced calculations. I was just working a time distance dead reckoning plot and I came away feeling like an idiot, it is a trivial problem. I think I need a dunce cap.

 

 

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I can relate to what kind of math problems you must be facing, Scott.  I was an aerospace engineer and probably have had to face a gazillion types of math problems while I was in school.  One thing I learned early on is solving for most math problems follow a similar format. . . first, identify all your variables then, solve for what is unknown.   I'm sure you already knew that!  Good luck in your class!  

 

(Did you know a gazillion is actually a number?  It means a lot!) 

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Instead of a dunce cap,how about a :bravo:round of applause for stepping out of your comfort zone, and meeting your challenges head-on? 

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What I found to be very useful is keeping a good journal. By Journal, it is very descriptive especially including how medication affecting me as well as keeping track of long term changes which is difficult to track on a daily basis.  For all my issues, it has been primarily sensory (vision, vestibular, auditory, balance, touch) ; however to my amazement, there is a memory issue especially heavily dense story lines on TV series.  I am surprised how much memory gap that I have after rewatching these shows 1 year after as though I am watching for the first time.  Now, you bring an important measure in evaluating my cognition via math problems. I know that there are resources like Luminosity but I can also pull my Physics and Math books from the garage.  So, my plan is to test myself at least 3 times a year to monitor whether any changes to cognition as well as memory tests.  The key parameter is how to objectively self evaluate. 

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I have so much admiration for you. Going back to school or a class after a stroke is something I only wish but I'm not confident enough to go for it.  So it may take you a few more minutes to get on the right path, so what, you are doing twice the effort. You are amazing!!

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In the end I had to drop the class due to my inability to process numbers, it is a form of acalcula, in my case I have acquired dyslexia specific to numbers and loss of placeholding. Essentially I can't read more that 2 digits in a row because they keep changing position, and understand where they fit value wise. But it has a name and from what I have read there is therapy for it, some people even return to high-school level math. So I won's be doing differential equations again but I can perhaps relearn how to do navigational chart work eventually. No number is larger than 360 and there is only +, - and fractions and decimal points involved.

 

We have to learn to compensate for and sometimes just plain accept our limitations. Doesn't mean we have to like it, but getting upset is pointless. Having an emotional outburst and anger about some deficit isn't going to change anything, it is still there. Accept it for what it is and you can start to recover and find new ways to cope. Not better or worse, just different. Be that person your friends and acquaintances talk about because you never give up, not because you did.

 

Now, where did I put my slide rule...:oops:

 

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"We have to learn to compensate for and sometimes just plain accept our limitations. Doesn't mean we have to like it, but getting upset is pointless. Having an emotional outburst and anger about some deficit isn't going to change anything, it is still there. Accept it for what it is and you can start to recover and find new ways to cope. Not better or worse, just different. Be that person your friends and acquaintances talk about because you never give up, not because you did." 

 

Scott, that is a beautiful quote!  I feel inspired!  (Hope you find your slide rule....)

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Scott I am intensely empathetic because I had to drop out of classes And quit my job. I hate the pity surrounding it but I appreciate the caring st the same time. I am jealous of how others progressed in life now years later and how people still say how young I am. I have problems with words jumping around and numbers. I read with one eye best and up close. When I color I have my nose in the book. 

I miss reading novels for pleasure.and the current best seller. and working at a job I loved and being in an enviable position with dreams of doing something building upon something that was meaningful and creating myself along the way. I feel like a block tower that was toppled over. I just watched everything go. My books. My work tools. my perfect desk. I use a simple tablet now or my phone. one eye is tiring.

 

But yes we survivors can endure this. We watch ourselves come back from the black hole. Tiny improvements are reason to celebrate. The shock of it in the beginning is like being on another planet. Who am I. But we discover with all that is stripped away WE are still here. Moments Alive are precious. Celebrate what we can still do because we know how easily it can just be gone.

 

And know you are not alone in this unjustness of the universe. It is unnatural to witness our brains unlearning things.

 

Watch the movie Brain on Fire.

 

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Realising your limitations is different to dropping out.

 

Glad you realised your limits before the course you were doing swallowed you whole.

 

One thing about having a go, well two things really:

 

1. You now know, instead of wondering if you should have a go.

 

2.  You had a go.

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