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Emails to my Therapist

I Forgot To Show Up!

Well, Nicholas, I just learned that I forgot to go to a long-planned lunch-on-a-porch today with four dear friends. I forgot to show up. I am disappointed and berating myself. And of course wondering if I’ve gotten a step flakier than I want to be.

This group has been brunching and lunching since the early ’70s. The restaurant where we were to meet–Mama Dip’s, a Chapel Hill landmark– is selling its building. One of our number is already missing and another is packing to move. So this was a big-deal lunch.

More than twenty years ago

I’m more upset about missing it than I am about possible cognitive impairment. I mainly (at 74) forget occasionally the name of an actor or title of a book. Now and then it takes me several minutes to pull up the first and last name of an acquaintance. Not too bad. But I don’t want to increase the area of forgetfulness.

Forgetting to go to a landmark lunch does not mean I’m “losing it.” I know that’s true. But still…one likes to have a 100% grip on the work and social schedule. Reasons I forgot:

*working at home as I do now I’ve become slack about office-y things like looking at my calendar

*since the start of covid shutdown, I have far fewer outside commitments and being at home seems the norm

*on Monday, I have a new novel coming out,, My Life On Earth And Elsewhere, a delightful fantasy I began writing 43 years ago. Right now this novel has me in its possession. Has me, in fact, in an outright tizzy.

(I’ve done this book thing before and it has never gotten to me like this. Puzzling!)

So I have excuses. And a resolution: Henceforth, I will check my calendar every day. Also, will enter appointments as soon as I make them. Now that’s taken care of.

Now I mainly have to grapple with disappointment at  not being there. And being mad at myself. This will likely take longer.



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  • Robert Braxton
    April 28, 2023 at 8:04 pm Reply

    Unlike my brilliant classmate Benny female in elementary I was lousy at history
    Married person I am helpless with the daily mail
    In my case age 78 I have learned to rely entirely on spouse of 55 years plus to manage these weaknesses of mine
    Especially my Social calendar which she maintains on paper 2 different levels in our residence

    • Peggy Payne
      April 28, 2023 at 8:34 pm Reply

      That’s how my husband does it, too,Bob. He calls me “the family historian.” So your wife and I need to hold it together. Good idea she has keeping the info on two different floors.

      • Karen Tam
        April 28, 2023 at 10:02 pm Reply

        We still love and we understand!!
        From one of the gang of 5!!

        • Peggy Payne
          April 28, 2023 at 10:57 pm Reply

          Thank you, Tam! I feared I might have hurt people’s feeling, for one thing.

  • kenju
    April 28, 2023 at 8:42 pm Reply

    At least you didn’t forget to renew your drivers license (for 3 years!). Talk about losing it…

    • Peggy Payne
      April 28, 2023 at 8:43 pm Reply

      Did you get in any legal trouble, kenju?

  • kenju
    April 28, 2023 at 8:46 pm Reply

    Not that I am aware of. I had a great driving record, so that helps, and I aced the licence exam and although my car didn’t pass inspection the first time – I had it repaired and it passed this time, so I paid my fees/taxes online today – only two days before expiration.

    • Peggy Payne
      April 28, 2023 at 8:48 pm Reply

      I think you’d be aware. I had to go to court once over an expired license plate. I’m glad you and your car are now legal.

  • kenju
    April 28, 2023 at 8:49 pm Reply

    Thanks. I am happy to be in the good graces of the great state of NC once again

  • Lee Grohse
    April 29, 2023 at 12:56 am Reply

    Sorry you missed seeing your friends, Peggy. If they’re people you don’t see often, that would be a disappointment for sure.

    • Peggy Payne
      April 29, 2023 at 2:30 am Reply

      Thanks, Lee. I loved seeing your Norway pictures. It really brought back our time there.

  • Henry Scott
    April 29, 2023 at 2:09 am Reply

    Well you’re lucky to live in a community where not showing up is a rare thing. During my nine years in Los Angeles I learned that what I was told on my arrival was very true: “You can’t spell ‘flake’ without ‘L’ and ‘A’.”

    • Peggy Payne
      April 29, 2023 at 2:31 am Reply

      Now I’m trying to decide if living among many flakes would be more or less comfortable for me. Less, I think. You’re glad to be back in New York?

  • Pat Daly
    May 3, 2023 at 6:26 pm Reply

    Hi Peggy, I have a new BFF. It’s my oven timer.
    Fortunately for me, I’m paranoid about noting appointments, webinars, online meetings, etc. on my wall calendar, and then checking my calendar daily. Now I’ve taken to setting my timer in the AM after I’ve checked the calendar. I’ve set it to as much as 9 hours ahead when I have an afternoon something-or-other to remember. When the timer goes off I once again go to the calendar to see where I’m supposed to be very soon. Sigh….

    • Peggy Payne
      May 4, 2023 at 11:28 pm Reply

      Wow, you are impressively organized, Pat. I’ll bet you never miss anything. I missed turning off my hot comb this morning, left it cooking for a few hours in the bathroom. Not sure what strategy to use to deal with that kind of forgetting.

  • Pat Daly
    May 5, 2023 at 1:13 am Reply

    I’m with you on that one, Peggy: no brilliant or not-so-brilliant response! All I can offer is to say that I’m pretty sure you’re not the first (or the oldest) gal to forget to turn off a hot comb! Hang in there and be kind to yourself.

    • Peggy Payne
      May 5, 2023 at 9:44 pm Reply

      Excellent advice, Pat! I’ll see if I can do that. Thank you.

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