14/01/2014 17:26 GMT | Updated 20/05/2015 06:12 BST

What Did I Come Upstairs For Again?


Note: I wrote this weeks ago and, fittingly, forgot to publish it until now.

Today I forgot that the time of an appointment had changed, but I remembered that we ought to get more loo roll.

Only by the time I got downstairs to the shopping list on the fridge I had forgotten about the loo roll and the other important thing I can't bring to mind.

Then I forgot there was an event at the school this evening, but I remembered to go into the bank to change my registered mobile phone number after I'd listed the wrong one when I forgot the order of the digits the first time round. I'd forgotten to do this for months.

I remembered to email and book my son a place on the Scout sledging trip, emailing because I forgot to do anything about a previous email I may or may not have got - and forgotten - weeks ago.

In the kitchen I remember I put new batteries in the smoke alarm, but I have forgotten to replace it... in fact, I can't remember which bit of the house it came from.

Once again, I've forgotten to ring my mother and now it's too late. Probably not for her, but for me - the power of coherent speech goes after a certain point which I must remember if I'm going to make sense on the phone.

I never forget to have meals. That's true, although I often forget my pledge to eat more healthily or to use up something in the fridge. That's the fridge I never remember to clean. Actually that absent mindedness goes much further... daily I walk up to a mess and think: "Hell, now I remember about this."

But then I remember all the things I am supposed to keep in mind:

  • The social and leisure activities of three children in their three different educational establishments and all the football socks, swimming goggles, 'can I take a cakes', and forms needing filled that requires.
  • The leisure and social activities of one husband. "I told you weeks ago I was going to be out on THAT evening."
  • The social and leisure activities of the family: Where and when we're going places, how we are getting there and what we need to take with us - plus all the paperwork.
  • The management of house and home: Boiler servicing, window repairs, garden maintenance (OK, maybe not this), and so on.
  • Body and soul of four other people and their teeth, eyes, hair and funny little rashes. Not to mention the clothes they may need at whatever juncture. "My coat/boots/gloves no longer fit/are worn out/are gone."
  • Logistics: Who's where and when. I write this down, but it doesn't always help.
  • Educational matters: What each child is doing as compared with what they're supposed to be doing for whatever it is they're supposed to be doing in school.
  • Transport - hardware: When the MOTs and insurances are due, what state the tyres are in and where the de-icer is, among other things.
  • Stores: Personal and general household - the whereabouts of, well, everything is, apparently, my responsibility.

Journalist, writer, blogger, mother, wife and, occasionally, whole person - also interested in food, fashion, feminism and folk music (less the last one but the alliteration works)

Blogs at: In a bun dance
Twitter: @Ellen27