Today, I attended a relative’s funeral. This will be the ninth family funeral in three years for me. Seems odd, doesn’t it? It does to me. Some were to be expected. Some not. Even before this funeral, I had been giving this life/death thing a lot of thought. I have been accused of letting my head wander places that most heads would not and, of course, it seems to have wandered that way again. The joy in me doesn’t dwell too long on life ending because I feel certain that there is a life of eternal bliss that will follow this. I rejoice for those who go before me. I will admit also, that I struggle in this world and often times feel I have no place here which leaves me daydreaming about what is to come. I suffer from insomnia so I look forward to one day taking a very long nap. And I can’t eat many foods that most people enjoy, so I look forward to an eternal mountain of cookies when I enter heaven too. I told ya. My brain gets on the wrong train sometimes.
So where did it wander to this time? Memory Bank. Making deposits.
While we live, we possess an unbelievably complicated gift of a memory bank. We each possess one and it is full up. Both of my parents suffer/ed from forms of dementia. I am keenly aware of the gift of our memory bank. And what a gift it is. As I take my daily stroll through the woods, I can pluck out a memory from yesterday, or 45 years ago. I can ruminate on it for a fleeting second or really dig in. Maybe even end up on a couch over it. In an office. With someone listening intently about my precious memory. Which I have many times. Memories are not all good. Each one makes up who I am. Good or bad. Happy or sad.
But you know what? My memory is mine. It is very personal. Very intimate. I own it. Our memory banks cannot go bankrupt(except with the dreaded disease) . There are thousands, probably millions of them at my disposal. We can bask in our memories. When you think about it (as deeply as I tend to think) it is incredible that we are blessed with such a rich deposit of data that can be flashed before our eyes in the second of an adrenaline rush. Or an aroma. For me, a song will send me back to a place that I can literally smell and feel. Sometimes the stirring of a memory can make my heart hurt. Just from the yearn for the long-lost time.
Life is really amazing to me and I like looking deep into it because it’s all I’ve got. And what a precious, wonderful, hard life it is. I have very special memories about each of those relatives I have lost recently. I can bring them around at will. That is one heck of a good idea.
6 responses to “Fill ‘Er Up.”
I truly enjoyed your post. I too am a deep thinker and can relate to how a smell can trigger my memory to a simpler time. There are times when I sit on the patio in the summer and remember how as a child I would lay in the grass and gaze at the clouds and then roll over and search for a four leaf clover. Sometimes I would put the metal lawn chairs together and throw an old blanket over them and have an instant fort. I had/have a vast imagination. Memories are precious.
I am thankful that the God I serve has given me the promise of eternal life. And that chocolate cookies in heaven will not be forbidden. 🙂
Thanks, Debra! I love that the mention of our memory bank invoked a memory response! I love the memories that you shared. Ahh. If only we could live those precious minutes again.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts, as always! I’m saddened that you have felt so much loss these past few years. As we become wiser, (I refuse to admit being older) the memories become more precious! I am comforted and strengthened by my own personal memories. In the middle of the day, I might get a flicker of a memory of the sound of a voice, or a familiar quote from someone in my past. What a blessing to have those memories shine through our days.
Thanks, Jeannie. Get a group together and come down!
This post came at the perfect time for me … having way too many losses in our lives, as well … the loss of our past seems to be the hardest to cope with. You put it all into beautiful perspective … thank you for articulating what should be in all our hearts. Peace to you my friend … Sandi