Hi there! In the pattern, before the instructions for casting on, etc. even start, are there instruction for pattern rows 1-18? Sometimes when there is a complex pattern within your pattern, they will list it at the very beginning.
If the pattern is online, can you post a link? That would help us to help you get this figured out.
EDITED to ADD:
About reading charts-- you read right to left on every row if you are knitting in the round; otherwise it's like you said. Here's some information: