Words are hard.

Last night when I was willing myself to go to sleep, I started thinking about words. Or more precisely words I can never remember. And yes, this is a common occurrence and it is always the same words. God forbid my brain mixes it up a little. Do other people obsess about words like this? Every time this happens I think that it won’t happen again, that they are now permanently embedded in my brain but I am always wrong. It is like Dory in Finding Nemo. Just keep swimming…

It started with the word ‘tapering’. I have no idea why, when or how this gem of a word made its presence known to my sub-conscious. It just appeared one day. The sentence that the word belongs with, at least in my thought process is, “How do you lessen your dose of anti-depressants?” Why would my brain decide that this is something to fixate on? Also, it would be more reasonable to use the word in reference to jeans. Do you remember tapered jeans? And then you would peg them? Blech. I hope those don’t make a comeback. And the socks people wore with them. No thank you. But back to meds… I know that you are supposed to taper and not do it cold turkey and because of that it makes sense that the word would have come up somewhere in my past but the fact that it has a starring role in my thought track now is what I don’t understand. And then, when I am racking my brain trying to think of ‘taper,’ the word ‘titrate’ will pop up. You know that feeling when something is on the tip of your tongue? The ‘t’ in ‘titrate’ does that. I will mull it over in my head, try to move past it to get to the real word and then it comes back over and over and over. Isn’t ‘titrate’ a word you learn in high school chemistry? I understand that it also relates to drug dosage and adjusting the balance but I don’t think any of my doctors suggested ‘titration’ of my pills in order to lower my intake. And why on earth am I thinking about it? I don’t even take anti-depressants any more. I haven’t for years. Obviously my brain is on a mission to push me over the edge. I would blame it on Alexa but this has been happening longer than Amazon has even been in business.

The other word is one that I still can’t remember. I know that it is similar to disintegrate, dissolve or perish and might actually be one of those words but none of them feel right. I am just not getting the level of satisfaction that you feel when you remember something. On a side note, do people in the US use perish in terms of fabric or is it just because I grew up with Australians? Fabric can perish and essentially it falls apart. Kind of what the Shroud of Turin would do if anyone tried to pick it up. As usual, I am going to have to ask my mom what the word is. I think I have asked her about three times already, over the course of years. The problem is that we go through the same exercise with all of the words above and none of them seem to fit. Maybe this is hereditary. Or early onset dementia. Ugh.

My vocabulary used to be phenomenal. I was one of those kids who could bust out ten dollar words like nobody’s business. Granted they probably came from books I wasn’t supposed to be reading…  It is important to know that I was one of those kids who read so much that when I went to the bathroom, if I didn’t have a book, I would read anything in there with words on it. Toilet paper packaging, shampoo bottles, toilet cleaner. When I was 9 I got a box of books from family friends. I remember two books specifically – Forever by Judy Blume and the Worlds Worst Jokes. Definitely not appropriate reading material for a 4th grader. I think I read them so fast that my mother didn’t even know what I had my hands on. I am sure it came as quite a shock to everyone when I started telling jokes that were not acceptable EVER. I still remember a few of them. Ask me about the virgin hillbilly in the whorehouse and I will be able to tell you the joke and then act it out like I did when I was too young to even understand what putting on a condom meant, let alone putting it on incorrectly. My parents must have been so proud. I am sure I told a few of them to guests they had over for dinner. Most kids would have done a little dance routine or thrown a tantrum. Not me. I would do anything to be the center of attention even if I didn’t understand what I was saying.

Thinking about it now, not a lot has changed – I still like to be the center of attention but these days, at least I write my own material.

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