Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I'm Losing My Keys; Am I losing My mind?

This first happened about a month ago. I was cleaning up a bit--doing laundry, emptying trash, tidying up, making trips from the little house to the big house to change the laundry from the washer to the dryer, bringing clean clothes into the little house to fold and put away. And somewhere between here and there, I misplaced my keys. I hadn't left home so the keys are here, somewhere, unless I tossed them in the trash when I poop scooped. I searched pockets and purses, I looked under furniture. I emptied trash and looked behind the garbage cans. Nothing. And all the while I looked I grew more panicked, more desperate. Two friends helped me look. Nothing. I finally gave up and started over getting a new set of keys made. Once I'd done that, I moved on, forgot about finding the old set and resolved to hang on to the new set. Well it's happened again, and in much the same circumstances. It's not like losing a key. This is a gob of keys on a key ring with a bright red plastic tag.

Keys are a metaphor for a lot of things, but the one that worries me most is my mind. Am I losing my mind?

Losing keys was one of the things my mother started to do when she lost her mind. She first lost her keys. Over and over again, she lost her keys. Lost keys was not the only thing that was going on with her, but it might have been the first sign. I wasn't living in Santa Barbara when all this loss began. But by all accounts of the progress of her illness vascular dementia, it began with her losing her keys and then moved on to losing control of her bowels and bladder and not even realizing it. So I'm terrified.

12 comments:

Non Je Ne Regrette Rien said...

well...it could also be a manifestation of stress, which it seems you've had a lot of. and, just so you know, I misplace all sorts of things (including my keys) constantly... xx

anita said...

i hope you are not writing this in response to the commercial on tv for aricept (the purportedly only drug for alzheimer's). because if you are, you should realize that that commercial is ONLY meant to scare the average older person, who may be forgetful now and then (hey, i put the weirdest stuff in the refrigerator when i'm in a rush ... always have) and send them to their doctor to get a nice script for aricept.

i get so angry when i see that commercial.

and yeah, hey, i misplaced my car today after an eye doctor's appointment. seriously.

Travis Erwin said...

If it is I've been losing mine for half my life.

La Belette Rouge said...

I have a rule about always putting my purse/keys in the same place and that is the only reason I don't lose my keys. I did lose a credit card last week( I thought) and that did make me feel half crazy.

Kvatch said...

I agree with La Belette Rouge: Always put them in the same location. Though that gives the spouse the opportunity to really mess with one's reality.

MRMacrum said...

I can understand normal folk might be a bit concerned over losing keys, wallets, sunglasses,etc. But me, well, I developed my ability to lose about anything when I was maybe two. From then it became easy to adjust to this tendency. I turned it into a game. Once I had lost something and played hide and seek long enough, I would give up and just wonder what was going to be the next new thing I would lose. I used to keep track of the things I lost, but the list became too cumbersome to keep up with. Just the other day I lost the spoke wrench I was using to true a wheel. I answered the phone or answered a question, something distracted me. When I cam back to the wheel the damn spoke wrench was gone. When I complained to Dash-Jim that someone stole it, he pointed to my hand and said, "Is that the one you are looking for?" And there in my hand, was the damn spoke wrench.

So I wouldn't worry Utah. You have a long way to go to reach the professional loser level like me.

Did you check the refrigerator? I have found some amazing things in the refigerator.

Utah Savage said...

Well, you're all making me feel a lot better. I did find one set of keys today in a place I swear I searched ten times yesterday. In the pocket of my the hoody I'd been wearing earlier in the day. I swear I went through all the pockets I posses.

I take so damn many drugs already that unless it's absolutely necessary or very temporary, I'm not taking it. Anita, I'm not going to take aricept. The side effects seem worse than losing your memory. If I got a diagnosis that I have Alzheimer's or vascular dementia, I'll just say good by to all of you, find someone to take possession of my writing, and off myself. But I don't feel all that much like I'm teetering on the brink.

Ghost Dansing said...

you might be in love.... but i think losing your keys is better than losing your silver boots.... never forget you.....

PENolan said...

Losing keys is often a sign you've got too much going on. When I worked in a job that required using my keys, I got a distinctive key chain so the custodians who found them randomly in the building would know exactly whose keys they were and get them right back to me. At a different job, I had to keep then tethered to my body and even then if I put them down somewhere, it could be days before I found them.

Intese crazy-making shit was going down both times. You definitely have been swimming in intese crazy-making shit lately.

karim said...

Very thoughtfull post . It should be very much helpfull

Thanks,
Karim - Positive thinking

femail doc said...

The only reason that I found my keys the other day is that I went into the laundry room for something or other, and there they were on ironing board. I hadn't been ironing...what the hell were they doing there?

ALICEN166 said...

Today, I had my car towed to the dealership. Last week, I lost my keys.

I remember putting them in my purse on Friday evening. Yet, on Saturday morning, they were not there. After searching the entire house for 4 days, I became convinced that someone took them out of my purse. Now, my friends all think I've lost my mind. They're using terms like "paranoid" along with "absent-minded" to describe me.

This was my second set of keys in two months that I've misplaced. The first set I figured I must have tossed into the trash. They were never found.

When the second set was missing, it was the same bad-dream feeling. My thoughts were, "This can't be happening again!" It can make one doubt one's sanity. Some of my friends told me that it's a symptom of menopause. This did not comfort me.

Friends advised me to calm down, meditate. With this calmness, I'd reconnect with my keys. This didn't happen.

I plan to be extra careful with my new set of keys. I cannot afford to lose another auto key. Without a master key, they had to reprogram the computer on my car. This was so expensive. Was this my punishment for losing my keys? When I wrote the check out, it seemed like it.

I think it's important to not get distracted when putting one's keys away. My advice is to put them in the same place each time. Also, put them away as soon as you come in the door. Walking around the house with them can only lead to disaster.

As for impending insanity, I'd say losing keys is not any indication of craziness (although losing them can make you feel crazy). It's when you keep losing your way home you might begin to worry.