Later, when I sat there with my Mom at her doctor's visit, it rocketed up my priority list. The doctor suggested that my siblings and I do a few things to help preserve and protect our brains: include plenty of turmeric and cinnamon in our diets (or take a supplement), read upside-down sometimes, keep learning...and play an instrument or learn a new language.
So I went home and ordered a big bottle of turmeric capsules and cinnamon capsules. (Still trying to get in the habit of taking them regularly. I stink at forming a pill-taking habit and it is a wonder I don't have 15 children from my years of being so irregular with my oral contraceptive!)
I try to read at least one document upside down every day.
And I bought a guitar.
Yes I did. It's an Ibanez IJV50--a nice little student-quality guitar to see if I could even still play. As it turns out, I can't. But it's coming back to me! I cut off my nails. I dragged out my old sheet music, and struggle to translate the dot on the line to a note on the guitar...but it's coming back to me. Flats, sharps, 4-4 time.
That's when it happened. I found something in myself that I had loved once, and which I foolishly ignored. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed playing. Not for anyone else, but just for me. To sit quietly by myself and make a sound that pleases me. (Well, OK, so far the sounds I'm making aren't all that pleasing, but I will get there.)
I was never any great shakes at the guitar, but I wasn't too bad. And I would settle for not-too-bad again.
My fingers hurt, but my heart is chirping.