If I Remember…

(By Pip)

I stood at the cashpoint and my mind went blank. I knew all the right numbers but in the words of Eric Morecambe “not necessarily in the right order”. It was my debit card for god’s sake; the card I’ve had the longest and use the most. But no, the pin was beyond me!

41jfmjewgalWe all have our moments: we walk into a room and can’t remember why, we stumble around for someone’s name when we bump into them in the street and we begin to panic as we scan the supermarket car park temporarily misplacing our car and fearing it stolen.

Didn’t you hate it when you were young and your mother went through every name in the family down to the hamster before finally landing on the right one? And yet you’ve done just that yourself haven’t you? Go on admit it!

We have a running joke at home. Having watched my mother-in-law disappear into Alzheimer’s disease [that’s not the joke!] neither of us is allowed to get away with using the word “thingy” and we hold each other to account until the correct word is finally dredged up.

I know my kids get cheesed off when I don’t remember the minutiae of their lives but there is only so much a brain can retain before things start dripping out of the bottom. And yet the irony is that I have a reputation for having a memory like an elephant that can be relied upon to not only describe an event in the past, but also tell you the year (if not the exact date) and what I was wearing at the time. I also remember how old friends’ nieces are better than they do but ask me what I did at the weekend, well!

Memory problems are a very common complaint in menopausal women but they are usually only temporary and speaking from the other side, I can assure you that it does get better and eventually – whilst you may not have the memory of a 20 year old – you will be fine. I set myself reminders on my phone, flag emails and use a password manager app and without “remember my password” prompts on my laptop I’d struggle but I bob along well enough. However, there are many other causes for memory loss aside from the menopause, stress being a biggie. Although likely to put it down to the menopause, you should check things out with your GP if you have any concerns and stand your ground if you are not happy with the outcome.