Saturday, February 21, 2015




Whew! That’s a big mouthful. But it’s an interestin’ subject. It’s a brand new science of the (human) brain. Norman Doidge wrote a book on it, in fact several books. I ain’t read either one o’ them but I saw an interview on the TV with him. He claims that it’s possible to retrain the brain to override pain triggers in it so as to eliminate say, migraine headaches for example, or even arthritis pain an’ so on. In fact, he can even overcome seizures experienced in Parkinson’s disease. Who knows what all else you can fix by retrainin’ the brain.
Well I got a PhD too. It’s from the university of hard knocks. It’s got nothin’ to do with neuroplasticity but ya do larn a thing or two in that institution, mostly to be observant. So ya might say I got my PhD in Observation. So this is what I observed:

The way Doctor Doidge explains retrainin’ the brain used to be called patternin’ forty odd years ago. I alluded to it in my book “Michael” where a number o’ people retrained Michael’s brain to be able to walk an’ run an’ do other basic motor skills. It was a mammoth job that needed eighty people for two years all day long every day. Well it worked – for forty years. One o’ the reasons it worked was that the walkin’ an’ runnin’ were goin’ on all day long, so that just reinforced the lessons taught to the brain.

Then of course there was the seizures. There wasn’t a gol durn thing you could do about them except be close by so as you could catch him before he kissed the floor. Well the adjustments they made for that was to have him sittin’ or lyin’ down as much as possible, cause the seizures would only last a minute or so. But that leads to another situation I was able to observe, talkin’ about seizures. My late brother-in-law suffered from Parkinson’s for some time. He would have momentary seizures where he’d suddenly hit the deck. It was like shuttin’ the engine off in his brain where everythin’ would let go an’ stop dead. But he learned a little trick. Pickin’ hisself up off the hardwood, he’d focus on marchin’ – left, right, left right, - an’ sure enough his legs would start movin’ as long as he concentrated on that. Course, that was fine so long as nobody interrupted his focus.

Well, just another word about eliminatin’ pain by way of the brain. I thought this was a good idea for arthritis sufferers until my sister pointed out that it wouldn’t be so good if you accidentally leaned on a hot stove an’ felt no pain as yer hand caught on fire, or you walked out in the snow barefoot. Murphy’s law applies here too; i.e. “when things seem to be goin’ well, you’ve probably overlooked somethin’”. They got a lot more work to do, at least that’s how it seems to me from up here on the top shelf.

Just sayin’.




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