Saturday, December 3, 2011

anomia - Um, um, what's that danged word ...

The first time I found myself saying that, just weeks after I had announced my first pregnancy at work, the response from the female staff members surrounding me was a knowing nod and comments of, "uh huh - baby brain."

Baby Brain.  "What an insulting suggestion," I thought.  There I was, barely in my second trimester, halfway done with my doctorate, and well into the establishment of my career.  As if something as simple as pregnancy would be able to rob me of those achievements.

Years later, struggling to conceal a mid first trimester belly under my looser suits, I was asked by a doctoral student in the class I was teaching whether I was pregnant.  Because I had been having trouble finding words that week in lecture.  By then, I had read of a small-scale study that confirmed that pregnant women were more likely to have poor spatial memory than their non-pregnant peers, and accepted it with resignation.

As several more years have passed and there are no longer any diapers in my house, I have lost the handy excuse for the occasional memory lapses.  "No more room in the brain after remembering pending bills, work projects, patients' needs, Daisy Scouts cookie sales, state board meeting, startup business law, and family health problems to remember where the darned car keys are" just doesn't have the same sharp ring as, "Meh.  Baby Brain".  At least these days my cell phone has the "Fetchit" program for the 20-odd times I lose it each month.  Too bad my vocabulary doesn't have that preinstalled as well.

anomia - the inability to name objects or to recognize the written or spoken names of objects.

1 comment:

  1. So what's the danged word for when you call your child by the dog's name and vice versa? My aunts used to tease my grandma for doing that, and now I'm doing it too.