This morning I had to pick Alexa up from school to go to a medical appointment at a local hospital. We got there to find that the clinic was actually in another hospital. Fortunatly, we were able to get there in time to see the doctor anyway. When we saw her, she asked if I had started Alexa on her meds over Christmas as we’d planned. No. I’d totally forgotten that was the plan. As we left I said, “I’m so sorry- my brain is really not working very well!”
Half an hour later, a worried Alexa asked me if my brain was working yet.
You can forget how very literal children can be. “I’ll be with you in a second,” means a second, not a vague point on the misty horizon of the future. “Not another peep,” allows for a variety of other noises. “Hold your horses” means not an awful lot if you have no horses. Thinking about it later, I realised it must have been a bit alarming for her to think her mother was malfunctioning so profoundly.
There have been a few occasions lately when I thought I had said one thing, but what was received was something different. And misunderstandings can cause no end of trouble. Perhaps we could all do with making a bit of extra effort to choose our words well, and to make sure they carry the meaning we intend them to.
Do you know what I mean?