Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Rambling Prose

I don't have anything prepared for today's post so I'm just going to ramble on about what's on my mind for a few minutes and then click publish. If that sounds as boring to you as it does to me, you can scroll down to yesterday's post, which I am quite proud of, which I put a lot of work into yesterday and which seemed to garner hardly a blip of interest. I knew I should have saved the concept for Thursday Thirteen but I didn't want to be constrained by the list format.

Meanwhile, I am discombobulated tonight because I am working in a different environment and I heartily dislike change. For most of the winter, I have remained in the bedroom for my late night (and often all night) work sessions because the temps in the front room would often dip below 50 and be uncomfortable well before then. This past winter was the first time I had that option because of the conjunction of the laptop which I got in the fall of 2005 and the WIFI which we got last fall.

Last Wednesday I lost use of my laptop for three days after my power cord gave up the ghost. I had to come out to the PC in the front room for those three nights. I discovered that the temperatures at night were no longer an issue. It was now only habit keeping me in the bedroom. And disarray. Back when I was moving out each evening, I had the materials I brought out with me regularly fairly well organized. I could pack and unpack them in just a few minutes. Even so the daily commute would take me over ten minutes each way. Plus the time it took to get settled again in body, mind and spirit.

Well last week my husband discovered the he slept soooo much better with me out of the room and I averred that I got more done than I expected to in spite of the clunky keyboard the unfamiliar desktop and browser features and my inaccessible files. This was partly due to not being interrupted frequently by his restless stirring in the bed which jostled the screen as I tried to read it, jostled my elbow as I tried to type or use the touchpad and his multiple requests each night for a snack, a refill of his water bottle or a request for a time check. Often his time check would be to reach up and move my head so he could see past it to the clock. I can't tell you how irritating that was. I admitted that I was already thinking about making a habit of moving out to the front room for my sessions and was just trying to work out what it would take to get organized.

I had to list the things that needed to go with me. The musts. The shoulds. The wants. The maybes. I had to think of the portability issue. How many trips back and forth were reasonable? How to insure that returning before 5AM could be done with the least amount of disturbance for him in the rare case that I would want to. So tonight I spent the two hours between finishing with the dishes and the moment my mother-in-law shut the hall door on her way back to her room gathering together the things I wanted for tonight's session. Among those things were the adapter plug that turns a three-prong plug into a two-prong plug because the only place to plug the laptop in out here which does not entail stringing the cord across a major pathway is a two-prong extension cord next to the PC. I hadn't needed it for months and had lost track of it.

I also needed to get the new power cord ready by making sure it was free of all entanglements. I needed certain notes and note-taking paraphernalia; certain books, including my Rodale Synonym Finder. which is my constant companion though I use it much less than I used to, I would be sure to find I needed it the first time I left it behind. I needed my reading glasses, my magnifying glass (Oops, I think I forgot that and I can't read the Rodale's without it. Especially in poor light like this.... Well that was convenient. Just as that issue came up, my husband came out to fill his water bottle and make peanut butter sandwiches. So much for the theory that his restlessness was entirely due to the disturbances related to my working--jostling bed, clicking keyboard, light from my reading lamp etc. Maybe he misses me?)

Don't get me wrong here. I don't mean to sound like I am complaining. After last week's scare re the power cord, I am grateful beyond words that the issue exercising me tonight is this minor. As I have made clear here before both explicitly and implicitly, I have major issues with change. I have great difficulty readjusting to new conditions. I have even more difficulty unfocusing my attention and then refocusing it. This is exacerbated by changes in environment that entail changes in behavior. Even such a minor thing as having to reach for the magnifying glass with my right hand instead of my left is enough to disrupt my train of thought and once disrupted it is a crap shoot whether I will ever get back to what I was thinking about or working on.

My sister sees evidence of the ADD that she and her son were diagnosed with several years ago. I've done some reading about it and I see why she thinks that, but if I were ever to be screened for that, I would want it to be by technologies that scan brain activity and not just by a questionnaire. And my several nasty experiences with depression and anxiety meds makes me very wary of chemical solutions, especially in isolation.

And by isolation, I mean in the absence of close supervision by a doctor who specializes in the effects of brain altering substances and their interactions. A fifteen minute office call every four to six weeks is not sufficient. I also mean, in the absence of cognitive therapy counseling and the application of environmental and behavioral changes that are proven to ameliorate the most aggravating of the overt behavioral symptoms, taking advantage of the sensitive feed-back loop nature of the mind.

I have some fairly strong opinions about these issues. Some of which are based on personal experience and observation and others on the research. But enough said for now.

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