Thanks to the magic of Facebook, I’ve recently reconnected with quite a few friends from high school. A couple of them remember the classes we had together, the teachers who taught us and even the conversations we had during those classes. One even remembers us being in chorus together in middle school! I’m thankful they have those memories and even more thankful they share them with me because here’s the thing – I don’t remember anything. Ever. My brain is like a cold battery that requires frequent jump-starts by other, fresher brains. In fact, I’m so bad, I’ve been accused of rewriting history. There have actually been occasions where I’ve been surrounded by family in the midst of recalling, and telling, a really great/funny/interesting story (in my really-great-story-telling voice) only to have my handlers (my sisters) announce to everyone in attendance, “ummm, yeah…that never happened. Not even a little.” (Photo: My Alma mater -Teaneck High School, Teaneck, NJ)
So I’m completely shamazed (check your urban dictionary) when people my age have vivid memories of things that happened decades ago. I guess I do remember some things. I remember everything that’s ever made me throw up – pumpkin seeds, horror movies, that guy who walked up to me one night in New York, announced he’d just gotten out of prison, and proceeded to lick my face.
And, even though I may not remember dates and places, I clearly remember how important events and situations made me feel. I remember the mix of sadness and excitement I felt at my high school graduation. I remember how I felt when I got the news that my grandmother died. I remember my first crush, my first kiss, and my first “what the hell was I thinking going out with him?” conversation.
So maybe I’m not a lost cause. Maybe some people go through life remembering all the details while others remember how they felt while all the details were happening around them. Or maybe I’m just getting old.
Just Me is Grace’s weekly, sometimes daily – depending on how interesting her week’s been- personal contribution to Women at Forty.