Once again I am participating in thatspaceinbetween‘s what I know about series. This time the focus is remembering.
For me right now remembering is becoming a very important part of my writing. For the NaNoWriMo challenge I am writing a novel that is heavily based on true events. I need my memory to reach my daily word counts.
I need to think back 15 years to a time when life was seemingly care-free and easy. Sure I have plenty of photos to help me but they are in Canada or New Zealand. I never seem to have my personal items with me when I need them most. So I need to rely on my brain. If this was a true memoir, I could call on the memories of others too but for now, it’s a fictional account so things do not have to be 100% accurate.
Not only do I need my memory for this story, but I need it to recover some of my lost data that was in my iMac. This is even more important than the tiny details of 1997!! When I lost my files, I had to think deeply about what it was that I lost. Some things, I will forget about forever and they were probably not important. Others, like my accounting spreadsheet are quite important and I will need to sit down and recall those details. Luckily I save receipts, although some of those were saved in my Outlook, which too is bye bye.
As we become more and more reliant on technology and save everything to our computers, phones and other digital devices, it is easy to let our brains get lazy. Often we don’t need to use our memory, we just look up a saved file or google for the information. Have you ever missed an appointment because it wasn’t in your digital calendar with an alarm set?
Remembering without technology is hard work. And it can be exhausting and emotional too. November has been set as the month to remember: fallen soldiers, word counts, thanks and now for me the reasons why I write. But some things are ingrained in us.
Remembering helps us function in our daily life without too much thought behind it. When you’re at the shop, when you pay a bill, read a book, when you look at your partner or child, when you make a meal, drive your car or turn on your computer.
Remembering is an important part of our lives, whether we realise it or not. Next time the words I don’t remember pop out of my mouth, I will stop and re-consider.
November 3, 2012 at 3:39 pm
So true Jennifer. Todays memories are chocked up and stored via technology, this is both good and bad. Best wishes for November, a few online friends are participating and it is very exciting to read their accounts of the experience.
November 3, 2012 at 4:06 pm
November 4, 2012 at 7:36 am
We do often jump to the statement ‘I dont remember’ when, if we practised a bit of mindfulness and gave ourselves some space, we do remember.
I only have photos from the last few years surrounding me. I packed up my first marriage and stored the photos away. My mum has all the ones from growing up. Some days I think my life only began when I had my daughter…its a struggle to remember the other stuff. I think I blocked some of it out. One day it will come back, I think.
November 5, 2012 at 8:50 am
Thanks for your input!. My 6-yr-old just said to me, ‘I forgot’ and it dawned on me that he says that a lot!!! It could be just an excuse. I’ve often put his memory loss down to living in the moment and when the moment is gone he moves on….wish I could do that too!!!
November 4, 2012 at 7:59 pm
How interesting to notice this trend towards reliance on the techie data. I have become more reliant over the past decade I guess. However as an oldie with a pretty good recall of much from life – particularly years, kids’ and grandkids’ birth(s) and birthdays I am blessed. This is a good lesson here about the ‘remembering’ for us. Not being reliant on others..much anyway! Good luck with the writing challenges. Denyse
November 5, 2012 at 8:52 am
Thanks Denyse! I’d say my memory is quite good for some things and not-so-good for other things. Maybe we choose to remember what we want and forget the not-so-important things!!
November 6, 2012 at 8:17 am
My memory has always been pretty shocking. I remember snapshots, fleeting moments, music and feelings, but am fairly useless on a daily basis without a list of some description. I remember my first phone number as a child, but with the emergence of technology, I couldn’t tell you my daughters’ mobile numbers.
November 6, 2012 at 9:50 am
Yes, how did we ever ring anyone before cell phones? I do still have an address book (a real, paper and binding book!!!) but any phone number I use on a regular basis is in my iPhone. And I’ve known plenty of people who have damaged their phone and have put a call-put to everyone they know to text them their phone number because they are now lost. We’re all lost in technology these days.