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Sat, Dec. 14

Middle-aged Musings: Why did I just walk in here?

I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “my memory is so bad, I could hide my own Easter eggs.”

Well, that’s been me lately. I used to laugh at mom when she’d walk into the kitchen and look thoroughly lost and ask herself out loud why she was walked in there. I’m not laughing any longer, mom.

I’m 48, so seriously, couldn’t this have waited until 58 at least? Sigh.

My husband has always teased me that when I’m distracted while driving, I follow a routine and end up where we don’t want to be. For instance, if we are talking in the car, I’ll go somewhere I drive to all the time, not where we were headed. I go on autopilot. I realize what I’m doing when he starts laughing and says things like, “oh, I see we are going to your office rather than to the restaurant?” Oops. Yeah, the car was driving itself to the office.

I’m also easily distracted. It’s my “shiny object” syndrome. He calls it my “pumpkin” moments. That stems from a country drive we were on. We were having a really intense conversation about something (yeah, right, like I remember what) and we passed a pumpkin patch on a hill that was just so orange and pretty that I shouted, “Pumpkins!” in the middle of our talk. He nearly ran off the road from the whiplash in topics I gave him.

It’s now our catch phrase when one or the other suddenly changes the subject or gets distracted. We have a buddy system in our house – we hope the other remembers the things we are forgetting. It sort of works. Sometimes.

I thought it was just me being of limited brain capacity (and I’m sure that’s part of it), but a coworker walked into my office, sat down and stared at me this week. I looked over my glasses at him, waiting. He bit his lip and said, “I’ve got no clue why I walked in here, do you?”

He’s 48, too. Now, he’s my right hand in the office and we are two seriously busy and scattered folks, so I get it. I really do. But he was kind of worried.

I said, “It’s ok, we’re just getting old, buddy.”

“Well, I don’t like it … at all,” he grumbled.

That day, we promised to start writing everything down and post Sticky Notes to each other’s shirts, kindergarten-teacher style.

He and I also have a word we use for when things get wacky. No, it isn’t THAT word! (Well, sometimes it is …)

If we have an issue at work that is getting ridiculous, he’ll text me “Bahamas!” It was an auto-correct on something else he was typing once and it just stuck with us. It now signifies one of us is getting frustrated, needs a break or just gives up.

We all need these little coping mechanisms and ways to laugh at ourselves.

Unfortunately, I forgot to order those Sticky Notes because I was daydreaming about the Bahamas.

Oh well, who cares. Oh look, pumpkins!

— Until next week (if I remember), Robin

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