I love lists. There isn’t much more I can say on that, but it is a relatively recent love.
For the last couple of years, I’ve been struggling with my short and long term memory. Initially it was thought to be caused by all the heavy duty painkillers I take for my EDS but after a year of pain filled detox, we discovered that my memory had gotten a huge amount worse. Long term – I don’t remember a lot of childhood memories that I know used to be in there. I had always had a scarily good memory – if asked about a day or something that happened when I was 5, I could give you all the people that were there, what we did and what I was wearing. I also had an uncanny ability to remember names, faces and birthdays. I could meet someone once and remember when their birthday was (not at all helpful in life!). Now, if I try and think back to something, it’s mainly blank. I don’t remember what day it is, let alone whose birthday it might be that week.
It’s not all bad – I can read the same books over and over as I don’t remember the plot at all! Same goes for films or tv episodes. But I am struggling with remembering my words in sentences, and quite often I lose track of what I’m trying to say during conversations. I’m also not too sure on meanings of words anymore, which is irritating as I used to have a pretty good vocabulary, and I loved reading. Now it can sometimes be a bit too much effort, and I’ve forgotten what’s happened at the beginning of the chapter, so there’s little point.
So lists have become very important to me. I have lists everywhere – on my phone (thank goodness for smart phones), I have a load of note books which have different lists. I have a big weekly planner on the wall that I write down everything that I have to do the following week. If it’s not on there, I won’t turn up! I also have a love of post-it notes and keep some in the car as well as in my handbag so that as soon as I remember something, I can write it down and stick it somewhere that I will see it regularly.
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m making my memory seem a lot worse than it probably is. I’m not on the verge of a dementia diagnosis (I hope), and I can get through the day perfectly happily as long as I have my set routines in place.
So, in the shower I do everything in the same order, that way I know I won’t miss out anything. In the car, I always lock it when I get out, even if it’s not needed. That way I won’t forget when I do actually have to. When I quilt, I make sure that all the squares and everything that I will need is sorted before I start so that I know that I won’t be missing anything out mid-way through. And I write things down. I have a list of all the places I need to go to do my christmas shopping and all the things I’m going to buy. I have an ongoing shopping list that I add to everytime something runs out.
Lists make me feel alot more in control when things around me are starting to get less. So although I’m keeping my fingers crossed that whatever is going on inside my head is reversible, I will still carry on with my lists. So much more gets done and it’s so satisfying when I can tick everything off!
Let me know if you love lists as much as me, or if you have any ingenious ways to help keep your life organised.