As a gracefully aging, seasoned woman, I have long believed that memory loss is a myth. Having had a sharp as a tack mind that could have anything I wanted stick to it, I am sadly noticing some things falling off the cork board. Another analogy that makes sense to me involves a techno concept. If I think of my mind as a computer hard drive, I have no problem with storage; but retrieval is another matter. I used to have at my disposal the title, lyrics and performer of any song I liked and even some I didn’t. Remembering names of those I met in personal and professional capacities was a piece of cake and now it feels like itsy bitsy crumbs left on the plate sometimes. Walking into a room to get something or do something was a no brainer, literally and now there are times when I need to return to the scene of the thought to recall what it is I needed. Thank heavens for GPS and Smart phone when I am feeling in need of guidance and not particularly smart myself.
Enter the world of Lumosity. I heard about this brain training website via Pandora (the DIY of personalized radio stations) and reminded myself to look into it and then forgot about it. Last night, while I was interviewing Mariel Hemingway and Bobby Williams for my Vivid Life Radio show called It’s All About Relationships, we were speaking about the idea of aging as a self imposed limitation and that we three agreed that we feel more vibrant, vital and youthful than we did a decade or so ago. I chimed in that my memory has been fading a bit and he recommended Lumosity. I didn’t need to hear about it a third time and tonight I climbed aboard the Brain Train, lest I experience more brain drain, and set up a few skills tests. I had no problem with identifying shapes after seeing them flash in front of me. Then came spatial relations…uh oh….I was able to match 5 tiles as they showed up and then disappeared, asking me to replace them where they were. Six was a wee bit of a stretch and then came 7. I could feel my heart racing and a some anxiety present itself, as if there was a live human being observing me mess up, rather than a computer who didn’t know me at all. And then I cut myself some slack, reminding myself that it was the end of a long day that started about 5 something, had me driving nearly and hour to take a training for work that focused on Tuberculosis, Hepatitis and Sexually Transmitted Diseases; lovely topics all. Heading back to the office to do some paperwork, followed by a drive in torrential rains and flooded roads, I am feeling whooped. Writing this column feels like no work at all, since most of the time when I create, I am in The Zone and don’t need to think. The words just flow. It is when I effort or believe that I need to know the answer to something or be ON that my train of thought gets derailed.