Remind Me

'Remind Me' image

By Maria Carty-Mole, Co. Meath

I've probably told you about this already. But then again, maybe I haven't...

It's difficult to say, and that's because ever since I was diagnosed with epilepsy and put on medication when I was 15, my memory hasn't been as good. Thankfully, it's only slight – I'm not going to forget your name if we introduced ourselves two minutes ago. Two months ago, however, is different.

My family and friends are very patient when they tell me about the holiday that we apparently went on last year, listen to one of my stories for the tenth time, or help me find a word that I haven't come across in a while and therefore am struggling to remember. Everyone's favourite so far was when my brain couldn't recall the word 'meringue', and replaced it with 'moustache' instead. I believe I was in a restaurant, and my exact words were: "Mmm...that moustache looks delicious!"

Many people with epilepsy report memory issues, and it can be tricky to know how much of it is due to seizures, medication, surgery, or other reasons. Memory loss can be short or long-term, and can make memorising material for exams difficult. Those who have more severe memory loss and drowsiness may struggle with day-to-day living and relationships.

It would be great if we could decide what to remember. That time I tripped over in front of everyone? No thanks! Unfortunately, like anyone else, we can't pick and choose. But I do choose to take the whole thing light-heartedly. It tends to bring more laughs than frustration, and most of the time I can get away with it.

I just make sure that when I bump into an old acquaintance I haven't seen in a couple of years, I don't attempt to introduce them to whoever is with me. "This is...erm..." never goes down well.