The popular and poignant song of years gone by is “try to remember the kind of September when grass was green, and grain was yellow. Try to remember when love was an ember, when you were a tender and callow fellow. Deep in December it’s nice to remember . . . “ The tune of this ballad is pleasant, enduring, and has a nice swing and lyric. In addition, the words are appropriate even today when remembering seems to be a lost art.
It’s a ‘lost art’ which is actually misunderstood because those of all ages are now blaming all memory concerns on dementia and/or Alzheimer’s disease as an excuse for an overloaded mind and schedule, disregarding the normalcy of some forgetfulness that comes with age. Consider the possibility that the forgetfulness of “normal aging” may be a result of failing to prioritize information. Give yourself time to accept that not everything is worthy of the space it takes up in your memory bank!
I find it freeing to be able to report that I have FORGOTTEN: the pain of lost love; the humility of doing something stupid in junior high; the times I sassed my Mother and caused her undue pain; letting go of memories of poor judgment. I will publicly and loudly give all persons permission to FORGET: that first speeding ticket; middle names of all your cousins; the dates of every birthday, anniversary, death and divorce that you ever once knew.
However, here’s a list of what is nice to remember: taking your pills as directed; saying please and thank you; paying taxes on or before the due date; where you consistently put your car keys; your room number if/when you are in a hotel or healthcare facility; your children, grandchildren, and/or spouse, if you are so fortunate as to have these. This is a short list of some of those things that a person ought not forget.
So instead of instant panic when you may have forgotten something, or misplaced something, simply smile as if with a secret and say to anyone who comments about it, “I think my memory bank is over-drawn just now.”