One day last week, I prepared a key lime pie to serve as dessert that night to friends who were coming over for dinner. I whisked the egg yolks, I added the sweetened condensed milk and the Joe & Nellie’s key lime juice. I poured the mixture into a prepared graham cracker crust and put it in the preheated 350 degree oven. I set the timer for 15 minutes.
And then I promptly forgot about the pie in the oven and left for Walmart. I remembered it some 45 minutes later as I was driving home. As I raced down our 25 mph street at about 45 mph, I was envisioning the house in flames, or maybe even already burned to the ground. Hey, it’s my nightmare. I can envision the worst if I want.
My house wasn’t burned to the ground. In fact, despite the oven being at least 20 years old, it was smart enough to have shut itself off. It was flashing the words HOT HOT HOT. You see what I’m saying? My antiquated oven that positively SCREAMS 1992 is smarter than I…..
I subsequently drove to the grocery store and purchased the necessary ingredients to remake the pie. I put it in the oven and sat at the table and stared at the timer as it counted down so as to not make the same mistake twice in one day. I like to dole out my stupidity slowly.
My sister Bec had kept one of her remote controllers in a pen holder in her kitchen for a long time. At some point she decided that was a silly place to keep the remote, so she put it in a sensible place. You see where I’m going, don’t you? Yep, she hasn’t seen the remote since.
I reckon everyone over the age of 50 starts to worry about dementia any time they forget where they put their remote. Many of us – particularly Baby Boomers – have stories like the ones I just told. When I told Jen about my key lime pie stupidity, in very sisterly fashion, she comforted me. “You just have a lot going on right now,” she said. I nodded in agreement. And then it occurred to me that I have absolutely nothing going on in my life. I’m retired, so no worries about work. At the time the event took place, all of our kids and grandkids were not even in town, so I couldn’t use that as an excuse.
I wonder, however, if we Baby Boomers overthink our situation. According to an article in the April/May issue of the AARP magazine, the risk of dementia is actually 27 percent lower today than it was a mere 18 years ago. The drop is attributed to our healthier lifestyles.
By the way, the article goes on to say that there is some evidence that being a tad overweight actually protects the brain, at least after the age of 70. Since I’m 64, my being overweight simply means I’m eating too much. But in a mere six years, I can happily announce that eating endless amounts of chips and salsa is good for my brain!
But back to overthinking. It occurs to me that there were very many times when I was a young adult that I couldn’t figure out where something went. Many years ago, my mother put together a photo album for each of her kids that featured pictures of each of us as we were growing up. What a great idea! And I loved that photo album. And then I lost it. I have never been able to imagine where I would have put it. I have many other photo albums. I have pictures of me in college. I have countless photos of Court and all of his cousins throughout their growing-up years. But I don’t have the pictures of Bec and Jen and Dave and I sitting around our Christmas tree or feeding the chipmunks while on vacation. It’s up to my siblings — all who still have their photo albums — to share photos with me. Thanks Jen…..
At the end of my life, when I am facing St. Peter, I hope he asks me if I have any questions before he tells me where I’m going to land. Yep, I will say. Where is that photo album with all of my baby pictures?
His answer? It’s with your sister Bec’s remote.