The Loopy BinPosted: January 24, 2013
Mom had a complete mental health evaluation. It took 3 hours and was conducted by giving her a series of tests to check her memory, her awareness and her comprehension levels. A week later we all went back to meet with a psychologist to go over the results. It took a quarter of an hour for the doctor to explain the different types of tests, what they were meant to reveal, and her scores, before he summarized the findings in a single statement.
“For someone your mother’s age,” he said, leaning over and patting her on the hand, “she’s just fine.”
“Really?” I asked, with more than a hint of incredulity in my voice. “She fine? Her memory is fine and she’s pretty much normal?”
“In a nutshell, yes, there are no signs of any abnormal loss of mental function,” he replied patiently. “She has some short term and immediate term memory loss, but that’s related to her age, not illness, and its well within the normal range.”
“Immediate memory?” Bill asked. “Like if I’m talking to her and she doesn’t remember the conversation? Like that?”
“Yes. She may not always focus on something that’s happening at the moment,” the shrink answered.
“So basically, if she’s not interested in what you’re saying, she’ll pretty much tune you out?” he pressed.
“I suppose that’s how it would appear, but actually, for a woman her age…”
“So I’m not too bad for someone who’s 88,” Mom piped in, perking up for the first time in 20 minutes.
“You’re 87, Mom,” I replied.
“Well, I’m almost 88,” she countered.
“Your birthday was last month,” I said. “I think you’re closer to 87 than 88.”
“Maybe, but at least I’m not ready for the loopy bin yet,” she said with a grin.
“Yup, she’s just fine,” I responded to the surprised expression on the psychologist’s face.