I Forget

I don’t want to pass away into the night without ever even realizing what I was doing here. I want to write autobiography and make sense of my life. I feel good when I remember something, anything. I don’t know why that makes me feel good. But I get depressed when I can’t seem to remember who I used to be and am not anymore.

I went to a college reunion recently. I didn’t graduate (I transferred), but I still went to the reunion. There was someone there who remembered me, and I had no idea who she was. She told me that she lived across the hall from me in the same dorm my second to last semester. Then half-way through dinner, she started seeming familiar, and then I suddenly remembered what her hair was like then and even some conversations we had and common interests.

I imagine there are other things I could remember that must define, to some degree, who I have become.

What I remember more easily, seems to be whatever made me angry.

Things that I enjoyed, but no longer enjoy, ended up being irrelevant and are lost to me. I can’t even help my son with his math homework.

“Did you ever take calculus, mom?” he asks.

“I was a math major.”

I took Calculus in high school, then again in college, then Calc II, and Calc III after I declared it as a major, but that was with a teacher who was probably the worst teacher I ever had in any subject. I still did well in it. I taught it to myself. But I didn’t do well in all of my other math courses that semester. The good teachers left (there were only two), just as I declared my major, though I don’t think I was the reason. Honestly,they liked me. And they were encouraging in their enthusiasm for teaching the subject. After one semester as a Math major I also left, feeling like I had no other choice, and ended up studying accounting. I was good at math, but I don’t remember any of it. I had a co-worker who went to his high school reunion and told someone he was an accountant now and that person said, “and you weren’t even good at math.” That’s because accounting isn’t math.

So this is all that I remember. I remember this girl, who studied math, because she was good at it, and may have even enjoyed it. It seems like she was not me, and wasted time on things that became irrelevant. Of course she was only a math major because she had given up, feeling discouraged, being a lit major. False starts were my specialty. I don’t even know who I’m angry at for that, but I am.

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