I’m happy to have a private neurologist, Dr._, who was from the first astonished at seeing my original art works. In December I brought another one in to demonstrate how memory loss is interfering with my latest (which I do not show to him, for it is unfinished). But he gets the point. That moving (for example) from the palette for a green I see I need, and picking up a red instead, and then moving my brush to my paper and not seeing where I’d seen the need for the green it makes painting a confusing frustrating thing. This is why I’m seeing Dr._: when my art is infected by some mysterious element, I need to know. A few questions and he ordered an MRI of the brain. His diagnosis is “memory loss/Ataxia”. He orders a CBC, other blood tests, and the MRI. (By the way it’s nice to find that the VA will honor this.) Now the blood work is back: all in normal range, except for Vitamin B-12. I copy from the results, not really understanding it much. Over the phone the VA nurse said my B-12 is almost double the normal.
VITAMIN B12 EIA 1923 High pg/mL (211-911)
A vitamin? Maybe only a vitamin is behind the life of symptoms like this:
I’m reading. Impossible to fight off the tiredness, so I let it go. I start seeing lines in the book “highlighted” in pink and blue as if I’d done so with a highlighter. The descent into sleep is so pleasant I allow it because I can’t stop it. Now on the page behind the words I see a realistic color image of Lincoln standing with Jimmy Carter at the funeral of Rosalynn. Moments later I come back to the page in “The Romantic Process” in Avery Craven’s “An Historian and the Civil War”. Hallucinations of this kind are really rather fun if not disturbing.
So, I’ll take the MRI next week. I’m betting that it will show normal. I had been taking a B-12 supplement every night for the past couple of years. Since this report I have stopped it. And I’m now not passing out all the time during the day.
Meanwhile my current watercolor – started on September 4 – is progressing, very slowly.