Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Hindsight canonizes the demons of my past

Ever had a conversation with someone who is delving into your shared past but somehow you're thinking, "That's not how I remember it!"? In my personal opinion, while fact may be stranger than fiction, memories are always so much stranger. They stick around like unreliable & unwanted acquaintances who always seem to be right there, in the periphery of your subconscious.

Neurologically speaking, memories are nothing but a shoot of energy and chemicals. But man, do they hold power over us. A simple scent or a reflection in the corner can take you back decades in a single instant. The trick is being able to know that you can't stay there -- how much ever you may want to. 

That's the marvelous part of hind sight; somehow like magic, you only remember the reasons you wanted to stay & not the reasons you wanted to leave. You remember the funny things they did but not how much they annoyed you. In fact, if you're lucky, you remember the smiles so clearly that maybe, just for a minute, you forget the tears. Sometimes its just so easy to hold on to the best parts of our history & use them to canonize the demons of the past. 

We can easily remember the castles of sand but not how long it took to make them or how they were swept away in the first wave. Isn't that so much easier than reliving the heartbreak & the sadness (which is usually locked away in a different corner of the heart)?

Somehow, for me, the most interesting part of it all is how people seem to remember us. As I grow older I see that people don't necessarily hang on to the last or the best memory of a person. Its usually just a random moment, something said without much thought, something the sub-conscious didn't really register as a landmark at all.

People remember me by something I said to them in school, or by something I did in college or by a weird little remark I made about life. So many times, these examples have not even stuck around in my mind & the fact that they define me for someone else is, in equal parts, unnerving & humbling. 

The memories I hold on to dearly are all about people that have come to my life & touched it in some way or the other. But the best memories aren't always the most elaborate or the most well-planned. It could be a smile, a simple touch or a kind word. As I wrote in a long-forgotten poem once, "Its not about the money, its not about the fame. It is about how many people smile when they remember your name."


  1. I like this post :) well written as always my dear! xxx

  2. Wooow! Well written inspiring thoughts!