Since I’m a big fan of romantic comedies, whether novels or movies, it was no surprise that I thoroughly enjoyed reading What Alice Forgot.
It hooked me in very quickly (the quote I used in my last post came from page 6) and held my interest not just because of the story and characters, but because of the concept of someone “losing” the last 10 years of her life. There are some interesting discussion questions at the back of the book, but the one that kept popping into my mind while I was reading wasn’t there. I often found myself wondering:
At what point in your life would misplacing the last ten years have come as the biggest shock?
Of course, I’d have gone through the most physical changes during the years between early childhood and adolescence, but other than “Hey, what happened to me?” I don’t think it would be as big a shock as the one Alice experienced. Although she went through physical changes, they were much less of a surprise than the changes to her family situation. (If you haven’t read the book, at the time Alice bumped her head, she was mother to two girls and about to be divorced. The last she remembered, she was crazy in love with her husband, and they were expecting their first child, which they imagined to be a boy.)
I had a similar shift in my own life. The above photo was taken on my parents’ 40th wedding anniversary, June 8, 1986.
Fast forward ten years:
I was no longer living in Caledon East and married to the guy in the red tie; I was living in Hamilton with my fiancé and planning our wedding for that summer. My brother had shaved off his beard and parted ways with his first wife, behind me in this photo, but was seeing the woman he’s married to now. And my mother, who was reasonably healthy in this picture (aside from some health issues she’d had for many years) had emphysema and was living full-time in a health care facility. That is a LOT of changes!
Other ten-year periods have also brought about major transitions – by 2006 I was working for myself full-time, something I never even aspired to – but none can really compare to that one. Fortunately, unlike Alice, other than my mother’s health situation, I’d have been happy with where I ended up, not trying to find a way to turn back time.
How about you? At what point in your life would misplacing the last ten years have come as the biggest shock?