I had a moment of something resembling panic a while ago. Why? Because, I could not, for the life of me, remember what the key to the door to the apartment I lived in in Washington DC looked like!!!
The train of thought that led me to the key in DC is not particularly relevant here. It was just something to do with the convenience of keeping spare keys. What is of significance is that I have absolutely no recollection of that key! I know for sure it was not the rectangular magnetic card type. So I am assuming it must have been a regular key. But, how exactly was the key? THIS.I.DO.NOT.REMEMBER.AT...ALL!!!
When I tell people that I am experiencing memory lapse issues, I am usually not taken very seriously. In any case, I am renowned for hazy recollections of events and people where others experience crystal-clear photographic-quality reproductions. Mind you, I have usually blamed this state of affairs on a missing, broken or faulty gene somewhere in my genetic inheritance or else on the excess of daydreaming I used to indulge in in my younger spring days!! In any case, I am quite happy to label such episodes as my senior moments since I am closer to the senior range than the spring days...but I digress.
Coming back to the key thought, I felt quite uneasy not recalling something that I must have used a zillion times. How come I do not remember it at all???? What's wrong with my memory? Aren't my synapses gelling as they should? What on earth happened to the connections in my brain?
Then, of course, follows the one word that silences ALL my thoughts: chemotherapy.
I am pretty sure the chemo busted through my skull and peed all over my already diminishing grey matter! I have only to look at my nails to realise how insidious and altering chemo can be. And let me not get into the hair territory again!
And I ask myself: if external manifestations of chemo are so drastic, what has it done to my finer linings? Those nerve endings and capillaries and cells that were innocently going about their process of renewal only to be slapped down and trampled on by chemo?
And I immediately feel kinder to myself. I tell me that the memory needs to be treated with compassion, understanding and TLC and that the lapses, in any case, are not that important.
But, boy, as much as it is ok to forget certain things, it would be nice to actually remember a few others....like my key.
Maybe someone needs to invent a spare memory! Or if that is messing with God's handiwork, then at least devise a means of backing up existing human memory....just for convenience, you know.