09 February 2014

Vestiges

Memories, even your most precious ones, fade surprisingly quickly. But I don’t go along with that. The memories I value most, I don’t ever see them fading.” ~ Kazuo Ishiguro, Never Let Me Go
I always thought that I had a good memory.  I can remember minute little details from my childhood, like the flowery bedspread my mother gave me when I was in elementary school, and the yellow flowery pillow sheet that I used to cover my favorite pillow, and on which I laid my head for several years and cried on for many nights during my teen years.  I remember portions of events from when I was young, and I even remember how I felt during those moments.

G is six now and she is often curious about how I was when I was her age.  She lost her front tooth recently, and she asked me how long it took for mine to grow back when I had lost my front tooth.  I was surprised when I realized that I did not remember.  I have a very vague recollection of losing my teeth, but yet I can remember the exact layout of my bedroom in our house on Greenport Avenue in California.

I remember the time my sister came back from school one day when she was in first grade and she told me that she felt lonely because no one in school liked her.  I told her that she could sleep with me that night and I sang to her until she fell asleep.

I remember the day my brother went off to the military, and how I cried when he left.

I remember when my mother turned thirty-eight and how I was afraid that she was getting old.

I remember the time I wasted being angry with my dad and how we did not speak for much too long for a reason that no one can even remember anymore.

I am trying to piece back the vestiges of my childhood and early adult years and while I may not remember losing my first tooth, or the first time I fell or got hurt, the memories and events that I hold close to my heart, I will remember those for the rest of my life.

2 comments:

  1. Thought-provoking post, you're aware of your memories but yet you've moved forward so well too, especially with G i think.
    Good to have you back posting!

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  2. Here's a fun experiment to help jog your memory. Ask your subconscious the question "how long did it take for my front teeth to grow back?" Then be mindful of any songs that come to mind, or numbers, tv shows, or dreams. The idea is we remember everything, but recall is the hard part. However the subconscious can answer these memory questions, but it does so using images, and metaphors, hence the need to be mindful of what pops up to your conscious mind.

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