Sometimes we remember mixed up. A memory that felt so clear loses its details. A different memory disappears and reappears a few years later happier than the original memory was. Sometimes a memory is someone else’s telling of an event that we were at, and we remember it partially through our own senses and partially through someone else’s words. Sometimes an event is too traumatic and we remember just little parts.
Sometimes, our memories of an event are actually memories of our feelings at the time. We don’t see the event clearly, because we were ill or tired or busy. Or we were very happy or disappointed or worried. The event takes on the feeling and is remembered through a filter of emotion. The event might have been wonderful, but the emotion was not, and so the memory of the event is not of the real event. The event might have been sad, but the emotion was not, and so the memory might be fond.
Memories can’t really be mended, because our memories aren’t really broken; they’re just slanted. A slanted memory can be “straightened” if we are able to talk to others who were also there or if we think about the event with determination to see it differently.
Memories that make us happy are memories that can be left alone. Memories that bring sadness can sometimes be reexamined to find other sides. Memories that are traumatic and affect our living are helpful if they push us to live fully, but if they hold us back then we need to reexamine them and see them differently. Sometimes the old memories that hold us back are best put away in storage.
(If you want help with memory storage, read this blog post: “Enough Drawers“)