Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Memory Girl and Spotter Girl

String Bean has become my memory lately. She finishes my sentences for me, recalls my shopping lists for me, and when I wander into a room only to find I can’t remember why I went there, she’s right behind me to say “You were going to feed the dog,” putting me back on track. She’s very proud of this skill and likes to call herself my “memory girl.” I think it’s fitting that she’s my memory now, since I had an excellent memory right up until the moment I gave birth to her, and it’s been slipping ever since.

The other day in the car she was reminding me what a great memory she has by remembering something for me (I honestly can’t recall what, I’ll have to ask her later), when Peanut tried pitching in and helping, by providing a list of nonsense words that just confused us all. String Bean pointed out that Peanut isn’t much help in the remembering department, but that she’s great at spotting things, like bugs no one else would see or planes so far away they’re practically invisible. This is a nice balance to her sister, because while String Bean can remember crazy things like what color shoes you were wearing when she met you two years ago, she can’t find her own shoes even when they’re sitting right next to her.

“I’m your memory girl, and she’s your spotter girl,” String Bean proudly proclaimed, and for the rest of the day, that’s what they were. They took turns showing off their impressive skills, with String Bean remembering things I hadn’t even forgotten yet (“don’t forget to feed us lunch!”) and Peanut spotting things that didn’t even exist (a bug that turned out to be a piece of lint, which she refused to believe no matter how many times I showed it to her). It devolved into a silly exercise of patience on my part, with having to acknowledge all of that remembering and spotting, even when I didn’t need it.

It’s remarkable how few things get truly lost in our chaotic house of too many things. Either String Bean vividly remembers watching someone kick it under the couch three months ago, or Peanut, at a glance, can spot it in the shadows between the couch and the wall. Overall, they’re handy things to have around: a memory girl and a spotter girl.

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