The Calendar

Calendars mark time, they are used by most of us to relate to future events. To dinners with friends or a night out with a loved one. Doctors appointments, trips to the vet, school plays, all displayed and noted to keep track of your life.

Sometimes you use a calendar to relate to the past. Usually it is reverenced when you miss an appointment such as, “I’m sure I put it in my calendar!” A quick check either confirms your action, or lack thereof.

Mom has a calendar. It is nice, shows her grandson and his wife and her great grandson. She doesn’t know who is in the pictures. She will sometimes write about future events. Where she will be on a holiday or a hair appointment, the usual entries. But the real reason for the calendar is to note when people visit.

Mom needs to write down who was there. She says she sometimes feels no one visits but then she puts her reading glasses on, reviews days gone by and realizes that her family has been there. We try to make sure when we are there that she marks it down. The last time I was with Mom she wasn’t sure to put Mike Y. She had to pause to remember my last name. Slipping, slipping, slowly slipping away.

We sat outside that day, enjoying the spring sun in a lovely courtyard inside the assisted living facility. It was around 2 in the afternoon with snow still on the ground but warmth in the air. Conversation is always superficial. Weather, work, life. This day she couldn’t remember if she had lunch, or what she had for lunch. That being said, I knew that in a couple of hours, like that lost lunch, I’d not even be a memory.

Hopefully she placed me in her calendar, her manual memory.