There’s a saying that goes something like, “You don’t know what you got till it’s gone.” For about two years I’ve kind of laughed at that phrase. For some of us, when something is gone we don’t even know what it was which means we don’t miss it.
I’ve been fine with it. I go through each day with a new loss flittering away and I feel fine. That’s because I don’t know what flitters away. Okay, so I know something is likely being lost. I’m aware that memories are lost.
Normally I don’t stress about it because stressing leads to other problems. Recently a memory loss, a huge one, became evident—with vigor.
I’ll explain an “other” problem for a moment. Depression. Well, I don’t know that it really needs to be explained. We all know what depression is. When a memory goes away and I then have people forcing that memory back in my head, or trying to get it back in there, things happen. The brain snaps. I actually at some point feel a pop in my head. I am sure it’s not really anything physical, only a psychological representation of what is happening.
When that happens, Ronovan is gone for a time.
My huge memory loss recently led to such a situation. I would think things were going fine, then wham, another hit from a different side. Lulled into things being okay. Wham, another hit. Rinse and repeat. Rinse and repeat.
Now, here I am, depressed, physically ill, and looking for the learning lesson of it all.
Memory problems make for a bad emotional entity. They also make for a bad relationship of any type. You wake up and you don’t know if that person who is your friend, spouse, significant other, father figure is still going to be that for you.
Who is it fair to in that situation? As I’ve been writing this I’ve been sorting through it all. I suppose the best thing is if it’s a repeat offender status thing, cut and run if the situation allows for it. I know live in family members can’t do that but there are things you can do.
Accept the memory loss person (MLP) for who they are, knowing what is possible.
Be supportive in the efforts of the MLP to handle it. Think for a moment about this. You wake up, or are even going along writing or watching a video and then—WHAM—you don’t know what day it is, or what city you are in, or who that person in the other room is. Ever wonder how a person handles that each day?
Think about being in the middle of a sentence and forgetting who it is across the table from you. In this age of internet and digital conversations and friendships it’s even more difficult to remember without those constant physical/visual cues.
People might find it surprising that I wake up and have forgotten the people in my house. Or I will go through one of those situations above. My body goes through a routine each morning and I discover what my problems are and I just go with it. I’ve told myself in letters not to stress, that I am normal. This is normal for me. I tell myself to begin to write something from a list of projects I’m working on.
Sometimes memories will come back or at least enough of a familiarity to make things fine or functionable. Yeah, another of my made up words.
What about the other person, the person forgotten?
What would I do if I were on the other end of this?
I honestly can’t answer that with an all encompassing solution. I think patience is part of it, understanding, and you know maybe even just cut and run. I know people balk at that last one but it is an option. But that is the option people will focus on here because it is seen as the uncaring, cold idea and how could I even think of telling someone to do that if a person cared about the MLP or of the MLP cares about the person.
I’ve been living with this for two years. You get to the point, where after having written about it, thought about it, and lived through it, you cut through it all to the heart or heartless of it all and give solutions.
And what about the MLP? Should they keep trying to remember, opening themselves up to an emotional tug-of-war to then either go through the loss again, perhaps not knowing it, or then being shut off once a connection is established again?
What do I do?
I have no one answer for myself. Perhaps I should, it would make my life easier. Can a person live a life, a healthy life mentally without people? I suppose they can but I’m not that far gone yet.
Now, for those who look at my writing and things I share each day and think I seem normal and I have all these friendships and all, the MLP has tricks they use to get by. Don’t call out the MLP for this if you still want to be a part of their life. At least they are trying.
I’ll tell you one trick I have. It’s called the Ronovan Writes Weekly Haiku Poetry Prompt Challenge. No, that’s not a plug for my challenge. I am telling you about a trick. There are people who do the challenge every week, and that means I read their work, usually at least twice, think about it, review it, see their names, and all of that every week. It doesn’t work for each person because of lack of regularity but when I see the name I know it’s familiar and once I get to their site things come back.
MLPs have sensory/emotional impressions of people if not actual memories. I know by a name, if it has been around me long enough, if that person is someone that is positive for me or negative, if that person is a friend or foe, if that person is emotionally good for me or a life drain.
When you hear that old saying about first impressions, it’s true. Make a good first impression and good last impression as well. You are asking, “How do I know when that last impression will be?” Whenever you leave the communication presence of someone, that’s your last impression until the next time you connect with them.
Well, this has been a longer message than I had planned, and I’m not sure if it is even what I had intended, but it is what it is and that’s all that it is. So, as I have just now read back through it, you might find it surprising I forgot about half of what I wrote while I was writing this. But again, it is what it is. I’m not to blame, you are not to blame, there is no blame.
Oh, I just remembered why I was writing this. Seriously. That big recent memory loss I had, like a mind wipe almost, took some important people away and broke things. Hmm, never mind. You know, I’ve tried. I think I will just deal with the depression of it all, come out the other side, and say I am what I am. It’s all I can be. Even if I don’t like it, I have to accept it or wind up on the 6 o’clock news.
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