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Those senior moments

Posted Tuesday, September 25, 2012, at 10:22 AM

It is gratifying to know that other people are in the boat with me. That is, memory wise.

I was in a big rush to get out of the house this week when I realized I needed to wear my eyeglasses.

I have two pairs that are never in the right place. The right place being where and when I need them. Sometimes I leave a pair on a bathroom sink. Sometimes I leave them on the dresser. Other times I leave them on my makeup table or on the coffee table in the living room or by my bedside table.

Then the search is on.

To shorten this tale, I looked in all those places to no avail. I did locate one pair, but I wanted the other ones.

Turns out, I was wearing them already.

I did not divulge this lapse of memory to my friends, lest they think I am bordering on senility.

I have a problem with lost car keys, too. I spend an inordinate amount of time searching through my purse for keys that I know are there.

I try to remember to put them in the same side pocket of my purse, but elves or something always moves them to the bottom of the purse where they are lost among pill boxes, lipsticks, my cell phone, a wallet, checkbook, comb, Hardees coupons, loose change, tissues, and crackers.

I've been giving this senior moment problem some thought. Why is it that only older people have senior moments?

I did an in home study and have concluded that seniors know a lot; we just forget. The reason for that is that we have brain overload. Our brains are crammed with facts and figures learned since we were in grade school. We have actually run out of space. Our brains are crammed.

There's a need to filter, weed out that superfulous overflow. Do we really need to remember the names of all our former classmates? Do we need to store all those dates from 1492 when Columbus sailed the ocean blue.

No wonder we draw a blank when we try to remember our best friend's name. Or the name of the wonderful movie we watched last night. Was that Tom Cruise or Tom Hanks?

Many senior citizens take a lot of pills. We are prescribed pills for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, thyroid and heart problems, kidney and liver problems, arthritis and back pain, thin bones and a myriad of other ailments. And those pills cause side effects. Some of those pills could cause mind fog, confusion.

I'm thinking I need a memory pill to remind me to take my pills.

Most children and teenagers don't have medicinal memory problems. Their minds have lots of closet space, open and free to new thoughts.

Think of the young mind as an empty closet. There's all that space for storage. But overtime it slowly fills, then jams to overflowing. It becomes difficult to retrieve anything from all the clutter. Items get lost, overlooked, forgotten, like an old shoe.

Speaking of closet space, I think that's another reason seniors are forgetful. Over the years, they have accumulated a lot of paraphernalia; a lot of stuff to keep up with.

We have an overabundance of curio objects. We have collections of ceramic angels, birds, nativity sets, globes, music boxes, chimes, ornamental boxes, baskets and such. That stuff makes it more difficult to organize, store and catalog. It clutters the house and the mind.

Seniors with "moments" have come up with a few coping strategies.

When they have momentary lapses, they blame someone else.

They tell little white lies to cover those senior moments.

They mumble, change the subject, or claim they have "too much on their mind."

Or they laugh it off.

I've been laughing a lot lately.



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From these hills
By Peggy Johnson
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