Short term memory impairment causes patients to forget what they were going to say, why they entered a room, where objects were placed, the previous sentence or plot content, calendar dates, their schedules, names and faces of familiar people, even family members. Cognitive neglect caused one patient to wander around the room looking for the room looking for the pencil clenched between his teeth. A mother left her infant and baby carriage in my office parking lot and went home. Others forgot how to spell even simple words, how to read or must re-read with varying degrees of comprehension. One patient drove to Philadelphia instead of the desired Princeton destination because the initial letters were identical and confused him. After shopping for groceries, another patient placed her shoes in the refrigerator and stored the food in the clothes closet. Lyme patients can lose their way home or on the way to work, bypassing otherwise familiar exits or plain forgetting where they are in time and space or how they got there. This is known as topographical disorientation or environmental agnosia. Elementary math problems may prove insurmountable. numerical errors are common. Sequential task performance is compromised in Lyme. Lyme patients have a penchant for saying, "Wait a minute", 2-3 times rapidly when the only demand on them is to record a phone number, which also speaks of perseveration.
There lay a young man, fast asleep - sleeping so soundly, so deeply, that he was far, far away from them both. Oh, so remote, so peaceful. He was dreaming. Never wake him up again. His head was sunk in the pillow, his eyes were closed; they were blind under the closed eyelids. He was given up to his dream. What did garden-parties and baskets and lace frocks matter to him? He was far from all those things. He was wonderful, beautiful. While they were laughing and while the band was playing, this marvel had come to the lane. Happy ... happy ... All is well, said that sleeping face. This is just as it should be. I am content.