Herald Journal Columns
July 15, 2002

Mourning the memory loss

By DENISE ROSENAU

We are now officially through with half of our summer, as someone here at the paper office recently pointed out. What a bummer. I'm sure I'm not the only one who can't keep track of the time anymore.

Some day I fully expect to wake up, look in the mirror, and discover a very old woman, only to think, "What happened to the time?"

Since my youngest son turned two a month ago, it dawned on me that remembering my oldest son at the age of two is difficult. He is only 8.

That's not always a bad thing, though, because I'm sure some of his little tricks were intentionally blocked in my mind. Maybe we, as parents, unintentionally block naughty-kid memories to avoid the possibility of leaving the little monster permanently at a shopping mall.

It makes you wonder though, what will I remember of my children when they are married with their own children?

I think I'm in mourning . . . mourning for the loss of my memories. I'm thinking that the herb that is supposed to increase memory function will soon be in order. Or better yet, an herb that can increase selective memory function.

(Side note: Come to think of it, a selective memory herb must exist, because I have yet to meet a man who hasn't mastered this quality. They must be holding out on us women.)

Along with the loss of memories, I think I am also mourning the loss of my youth. Maybe they go hand-in-hand.

Oddly enough, though, I sure seem to remember enough of my youth to mourn for it.
Youth as I knew it was forever changed with the introduction of a special little someone. This little someone (who isn't so little anymore) not only changed my life, but changed my prospective.

And things haven't been the same since, although I can't say that's such a bad thing. Just different. But there are still those times, even with my adult responsibilities, that I feel like a kid.

My parents tell me that they still feel like kids sometimes, and they are both over 60. I found this to be very reassuring, because now I know that life really doesn't end when your children are taller than you.

It is hard to imagine always feeling like a kid; a kid, that is, with arthritis (which my family affectionately refers to as "Arfur"), wrinkles where they don't belong, and declining eyesight. But yet, a kid, more importantly, with wisdom.

Now that I think about it, growing older doesn't sound so bad. Growing older doesn't have to mean growing up. It just ads a touch of wisdom to keep us in line.


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