How can I remember the name of my best friend in fourth grade––Sheila––but forget the name of my next door neighbor or a person I met only moments ago? I know what to do in these situations, but I don’t always do it. It helps to seek and be finding God when I am forgetful. He’ll never fail you or me.
Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you (Psalm 9:10).
Instead of going right to the source, I try the tricks people recommend. Pay close attention to a name when you meet someone. Find something about the person to associate the name with, like hair color or gesture: Rosemary, the redhead, or Minnie from Minnesota. Repeat the name silently in your mind three times. Dave, Dave, Dave. I tried that but the name wouldn’t stick because the man reminded me of my cousin, Dan. I kept saying Dan, Dan, Dan until I slipped and said it out loud.
Then there’s the old use-the-name-in-a-sentence trick as soon as you hear the person’s name. That doesn’t work for me either. “It’s nice to meet you, Redhead, I mean Rosemary.” People look at me as though I’m one taco short of a Mexican Special.
Fortunately, I’m not alone. Two friends who had known each other for decades were Bridge partners when one looked at the other and realized she couldn’t pull the woman’s name.
Her face flushed and she fidgeted with her cards, hoping the name would come back. After a moment she gave in to her forgetfulness. “I’m so sorry,” she said feeling stupid, “but I can’t remember your name. Isn’t that awful?”
Her partner looked across the table with a mix of hurt and anger in her eyes. Just as the first woman was about to apologize again, the other looked up and said with a twinkle in her eye, “How soon do you need to know?”
The moral of the story is that when my memory fails, I should stop and pray. Then I can be finding God when I am forgetful. You can too. Ask Him for the right name when you need it. It worked for me, once I got in the habit.
©Karen O’Connor. Karen is a writing mentor and an author of many humorous books on senior moments, including It’s Taken Years to Get This Old. Check Karen’s web site for titles and information. www.karenoconnor.com
Enjoy this humorous YouTube video featuring a funny song, “Ode to Forgetfulness.”