Neuro- Psych testing, after my brain injury, revealed that I’d lost half my processing speed and working memory. I was lucky to see a therapist who taught me some exercises to rebuild pathways in my brain. Today I use computer games for the exercise and have greatly improved my memory, but I have no balance and thinking things out, even simple things, takes long, long, long.
After watching a video on bringing the ancient martial arts of China to New York, I began to wonder if my lack of balance is connected to my reduced processing speed. I began to wonder whether I had learned as a young child techniques that formed a basis for my speed in thinking, and that when I fell and injured my brain, I broke the connection I’d had to those techniques.
In Chinese Preying Mantis martial arts the first things that are studied take a year each to incorporate so strongly into the person learning them that after the first year when the person goes on to learn the second technique, the first learning is so strongly a part of the person that no thought need be given to it going forward, it is simply there, a part of everything thereafter. And, the things that distinguish Preying Mantis are balance and speed. See where I’m going with this?
As an aside, the video link at the top of this page is great for learning how to topple an attacker.
I’ve found a video on Tai Chi for beginners. The Preying Mantis video that got me started had mentioned Tai Chi. So, I’m going to base my learning/experiment on Tai Chi. The 5 Minutes a Day video says it takes a hundred days.
Day 1 ~ I’m using my iphone to watch the video while following along. I can do the first bit, which is feet together, then slowly lifting and lowering arms. I can’t properly do the second bit, of lifting one foot, because I don’t have enough balance to do it without holding on to something. I did it holding on to my walker.
Day 2 ~ I particularly like that the Tai Chi video emphases doing the exercises for 100 days because forming a habit of doing the exercises is Key. I should add that I also do an exercise designed to be done sitting down:
Day 3 ~ I was surprised today. I’d put off washing my hair as long as I could. I don’t like losing my balance as I do when my eyes are shut, like when I’m avoiding getting shampoos suds in them. The surprise was that today when I was washing my hair I didn’t lose my balance. What surprises me is not that doing the Tai Chi can help, but that it appears to have helped so quickly. Yet, I think that must be what’s happened.
Day 4 ~ It’s becoming easier to do the first Tai Chi exercise, but I can’t do it smoothly yet. Still, I am having less pain, so I’m doing more things. Today I got as far as the Hug the Tree movement.
Day 5 ~ Today tested my resolve. Would I do what someone else wanted with my time, or preserve this tiny little 5 minutes for myself? Happily I chose Tai Chi and me.
Day 6 ~ I’m beginning to wonder if my lungs feel congested in part because over several years I’ve felt a lot of fear… of being foreclosed and losing my home, even though it’s clear Wells Fargo has filed false affidavits, etc. The point is, perhaps because I was scared so much of the time I was breathing very shallowly.
Day 7 ~ I’ve been working extra on expanding my lungs, even though my basic breathing is not even remotely in sync with the video. I can see why this needs 100 days.
Day 8 ~ My daily improvement is very slight.
Day 9 ~ I wonder if I’m being unrealistic to expect this Tai Chi to work like WD 40 for my muscles and joints… 12/26/18
Day 10 ~ One thing I have learned is that my lung capacity is severely reduced. Maybe it’s from living in hydrogen sulfide for years, or maybe it’s related to having had tetanus. When I had tetanus and for sometime thereafter I sounded extremely old when I talked, wispy and old like someone way over 90 years old.
1/6/2019 ~ On the 28th of December I was so cold I could not do the Tai Chi. On New Year’s Day I collected the mail from the day before and found that on the 28th the New Mexico Supreme Court denied my Motion for Rehearing, clearing the way for me to be evicted from my home. I’ve done another motion centered on the fact that the foreclosure violated the UCC, New Mexico statutes 55-3-301 and 55-3-309. I was freezing cold all day today, so I’m worried that tomorrow’s mail will bring another denial. Just to be clear, on each of these two days it was warmer in here than on other days when I hadn’t been so cold.
Also, my legs have been collapsing and I’m having a crippling kind of pain, so until I feel better I won’t be able to do the Tai Chi… I really hope there’s some kind of miracle and the New Mexico Supreme Court changes its mind.
12/2/2019 ~ I just remembered why I stopped doing Tai Chi. It was because Wells Fargo was taking my home and I was soon to be evicted. Wells Fargo used fraud and false affidavits, just so you know. Then I lived at Motel 6 for several months and finally came here to a lovely new apartment, with the plants I was able to have at Motel 6.
A couple weeks after I moved here the sewer for my building backed up into my bathtub. Property management blamed me, saying I was the only woman in the building and the cause was a feminine hygiene product. I pointed to my white hair, to no avail.
A month later the backup was vastly worse. Property management had ignored my complaints about splashing from the sewer pipes under my kitchen sink and the fact it threw water out. The water in my toilet was bubbling as if it were doing some sort of gigantic boil.
In the really horrible backup I was asleep for an hour, perhaps two, while it began. By the time I woke up there was an acrid, putrid, stifling smell and my bathtub was half full of sewage. I went out to sit on my patio, but the smell was nearly as bad outside. I had to walk two buildings and a parking lot away before the air wasn’t sickening.
After that when I went to the bathroom, it smelled like that. It was very worrying. Something airborne must have gotten into my system. Up until then it had always smelled like the bathroom in my Polish grandparents’ home. I thought grandpa’s home grown vegetables explained the rather clean smell (by comparison).
I used a lot of vitamin C, but either I didn’t use enough, or it wasn’t something vitamin C could change.
Then I got an itchy, swollen thing with some rash. I’d never had pimples on my knees and toes before. Googling gave me the idea I should treat my problem as if it was a fungal infection like athlete’s foot so I ordered a tea tree liquid soap which people had almost universally found to be effective. But, for me the swelling got three or four times worse. The itch and pain was so bad I could hardy sleep.
Next I ordered Cortizone-10. It stopped the itching, but the swelling was slow to recede and I was still getting pimple/eruption type things in the affected areas. Plus, I was not feeling well.
By mid November I was having infection type pain in my jaws that reached up to my temples. I didn’t have the money to buy more vitamin C because property management had refused to help me set up online rent payment and had refused to tell me when my rent was due. I could not find my lease, and remembered that I’d moved in on August 6. But on November 6 my account showed $0 due. Then, two days later there was a $29.50 late fee that I had to pay or they wouldn’t accept my rent and instead would evict me. So, I fell short of money.
On Thanksgiving, November 28, I had swelling around my old dental implants, and pain, and it all became a huge depression. I took lots of Astaxanthin, to get rid of the infection, but it didn’t work as well as Vitamin C, or, I simply wasn’t using enough. I had no idea how much I needed use to get the same relief I get from infections using vitamin C.
However, the smell wasn’t that horrible sick backed up sewage smell anymore when I went to the bathroom. But, I began getting a sharp pain in my abdominal area, that was very worrying. I was feeling really sick, and major depressed.
On December 1, my upstairs neighbor went to the dollar store and got 4 bottles of 500 mg vitamin C for me. I used 15,000 mg between the afternoon and 10 p.m. With that, the swelling along my jaws began receding.
Today, December 2, my jaw is still painful to the touch, but not drastically so, the way it was.
A lot of my hair fell out while I had the infection, but maybe it’s worth it to have gotten rid of whatever it was in my body that was making the smell, as if backed up sewage was inside my body.
In researching a band of red going across the tops of my fingers, under my fingernails, and my fingertips feeling as if something’s jammed under my fingernails, making me wonder about inflammation, I ran across a reference to a foul odor with Darier Disease.
As I continued working on my page, Redness under Fingernails I found two diseases associated with redness under fingernails, Darier Disease and Lichenoid Disease. The skin eruptions in Darier Disease looked a lot like the ones I had around and above my knees.
One of the pictures I found of Lichenoid Disease looked a lot like the pimples that had come out on my big toe. The image below is not of the pimple things I had.
I suspect I should have washed everything in my apartment, like the counters, fridge handles, linens… Everything where airborne pathogens from the sewage in my bathtub could have fallen and lodged.
I think I’m lucky that all I lost was hair. I felt for awhile there that I could lose my life… I just was not feeling at all well, and… I’m 75 years old… so…
Jake Mace Image (at top) ~ A critical review says,