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You’re All the Things I’ve Got to Remember

You're all the things I've got to remember. Linking up with Finish The Sentence Friday for another great prompt. This week's topic is: I wish I could forget

I have some strange superpowers in this life. I’m pretty sure we all do.

Some of them are easily explained, and most of them are not. As you know, I don’t experience time the way I think that most people do Another thing is that I never, ever, EVER forget things that people say to me. What’s strange is that I’m super detail oriented, but I’m not necessarily great with names. It has to stick and I need to hear them at least twice, usually. It’s not even a forgetful thing. It’s that I’m already doing a full scan/psychoanalysis/taking in of this new person in front of me so the name bounces right off me while I factor in anything and everything else.

I ask again, and then it’s solidified. Usually.

You're all the things I've got to remember. Linking up with Finish The Sentence Friday for another great prompt. This week's topic is: I wish I could forget

Mostly then, I remember it for life, but there are many times in which it gets lost in the details of short and long-term memory. It’s like they fly around as shiny, rapid-fire balls in a pinball machine – some things stick, some get thrown around, some are easily lost, and some take their time for a hole in one. Here’s my thing. I never forget the things that people say to me. So I might not remember your name, but I’ll remember that at our first conversation, we talked about the quality of rainbow sprinkles in ice cream parlors vs. grocery stores. Maybe your dog was hit by a car when you were 15 and you still think about that dog on your drive to work every day. Maybe you’re from Oklahoma, and you’re the only person I’ve ever met from Oklahoma.

And maybe you’ve been through two tornadoes and stained glass shattered on you.

You're all the things I've got to remember. Linking up with Finish The Sentence Friday for another great prompt. This week's topic is: I wish I could forget

There’s more than one downside to remembering everything, but the plus sides are awesome! It makes for incredible writing inspiration, and although I don’t write fiction (although I suppose I could do it and be darn good at it) it helps with my creative non-fiction. I think I’d be an incredible detective, the way I scan and analyze people to death, only, it’s more like I analyze them to life. It’s because I need to feel safe, and especially now that I have kids. I need you to make me feel safe and if you don’t, I’ll know instantly. And that’s partly why I don’t forget things.

You're all the things I've got to remember. Linking up with Finish The Sentence Friday for another great prompt. This week's topic is: I wish I could forget

  • I wish I could forget in sixth grade when the terrible blonde twin made fun of my hair and called me ugly. I know I used to analyze people when I was a kid, but nothing like I do today. Today I would have run away had I looked her in the eyes as who I am now.

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  • I wish I didn’t remember that my dad once called me heavy-footed because now I walk light as rain, everywhere I am and I go, and you’ll never hear me coming. I realize now that I sound like I’d make an excellent psychopath because I remember everything and you wouldn’t hear me coming, but don’t worry. I’d pass my own psychoanalysis.

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  • I wish I didn’t remember an argument with Cassidy that was particularly hurtful and damaging. Not that there was only one argument (in fact, I remember a dozen), but there are the ones in which the words aren’t easily, or ever, forgotten. And I wish they were.

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  • I wish I could forget that summer day – walking with my friends past a group of high school boys whispering about us and rating us and comparing us. As if we were prizes they got to select, when in fact, we WERE prizes, and ones they would never get to select.

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  • I wish I could forget the darker things you have said to me about other people, or what you think about me or even what you think about you, because I have kept/will keep the secrets but it changes the way I view the world, and it changes the way I view you.

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And there are so many things I’m glad I didn’t forget.

Like the sound of my father’s laughter, and how he corrected my grammar when I said “even” but meant “also.” Or the tiny sounds both kids made when they were first born into the bright light, which weren’t cries at all but were more like indignant and overwhelmed squawks.

Which is how I felt too. Squawk Squawk!

There are so many things I wish I could remember, like ancient lullabies – both sung to me and sung by me – and being carried from car to bed, safe and secure, waking up to a bright morning with no memory of how I got there. And, knowing I surely smiled in my sleep along the way.

Hugs and kisses and conversations I never knew were going to be the last, so I never got lost in them or remembered all the hows, whys, whens, and wheres of how they came to pass.

I wish I could always remember – who I am, what I’ve overcome, what I’ll always fight for, and the quiet power that has gotten me through hard times, and will do so again and again.

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I’m linking up with Finish The Sentence Friday (FFTS) for another great prompt. This week’s topic is “I wish I could forget…” And there’s still time to write yours. Link up HERE.

So, what would you say?

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13 Comments

  1. I am totally terrible with names and have a tendency to walk heavy on my feet. So, we definitely have those two things in common 😉 That said, there are definitely things I am glad that I remember, but there are also things I am not so happy that I still can remember. All well, I guess it is a draw on that so to speak! 🙂

  2. I think I’d have to go with hurtful conversations, sort of like your argument with Cassidy. There are a few rough ones that I wish I could erase from my memory.

  3. The look of love and joy in the photo of you holding newborn Scarlet or Des is truly unforgettable Tamara, and l keep coming back to it. I was a painfully slow learner all through school. I’d like to forget the whole experience of my years of struggling in the classroom, and with homework. l want to remember how l always kept trying and managed to get good grades.

    1. I had a math block that lasted for years, and it turns out I was pretty great at math. It was a real struggle for so long, though. I wish I forgot that block, especially when helping kids with homework.

  4. I have a really hard time with names and have never considered whether it’s because I’m seeing beyond the name to the person beneath it – but I love that you see this in you. I can’t remember our first words, but I remember when you walked into BlogU and I was standing there and was like “HEY!!!” and your suitcase wheel caught on something and it fell over and it was crowded and we were both flustered but then we were like “HI!” and we hugged and it was awesome. I also remember you coming to find me when you were leaving and I worried about you driving home on a Saturday night.
    This was lovely as always (and OMG tell me it’s not just going to be the two of us after last week’s huge party), and I felt everything about the mean girl and the boys comparing you and the sound of your dad’s laughter, and that you changed how you walked after a comment he made. I changed my brow (to be more wrinkly I think) after my dad said I had a steel-gaze. Wow. xoxo

    1. ha, I’ll take this FTSF to the end if you will. Maybe it is just the two of us this week?!
      I remember my suitcase getting stuck on a stair! I have since given that suitcase to the kids. I know I swore at it a bunch!
      I adore you!

  5. I don’t think I will forget the picture of ANT Man ordering lunch. That is a winner for sure! Happy birthday to him!

    My memory is getting terrible. no joke. It was so good and now it’s kind of like a film is coming down sometimes. How does that happen?

    Happy summering friend!

    1. My mom said it was an iconic photo! It was just great timing and the way the background is blurred but you can see a diner regular there in a baseball cap. Sigh. I miss that day!!
      Happy Summer!

  6. While there are some things I would like to forget, I love that my memories are flooded with happy times with family and friends. Des is so dang cute in that Ant Man costume!

  7. Tamara, I am the SAME way with names, although I often STILL can’t remember them no matter how many times I hear them- BUT I remember every detail of that person’s story. I love how you describe that- we are so busy investing in WHO they are instead.

    As always, such a beautiful and introspective read, my friend.

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