Choose to Remember

The Huffington Post is one of my usual daily browses, and there today I came across a piece by Dr. Judith Rich – ‘The Power of Conscious Forgetting’. She quotes Dr. Clarissa Estes who says:

“We practice conscious forgetting by refusing to summon up the fiery material, we refuse to recollect. To forget is an active, not a passive, endeavor. It means to not haul up certain materials, or turn them over and over, to not work oneself up by repetitive thought, picture, or emotion.”

The article is a great read.

There are many memories I’ve allowed to dim – disappointments, frustrations, hurt, trauma. Where my thoughts led me, though, is to the flipside of this “conscious forgetting”. How about active remembering? My favourite cookie of all time is Mrs. Fields Cinnamon Sugar cookie. Mmmmm, yes!! The taste warms my mouth and melts my heart. My love was the one who first introduced me to it, some years ago, and every time I eat them, I am back on that road trip we were taking, full of eager anticipation and intensely in tune with life’s goodness.

Now both he & the glorious cookies are far away. It’s easy some days to be constantly reminded of the distance between myself and so many people and things I love. Other days, though, I am strong enough to choose to forget the distance and remember the joy. I can’t do anything but smile when I remember dancing the New York night away at a send-off for a new but valued friend. How can anything fill me but joy, thinking of good wine soaking the palette whilst good music soaked the soul? And that evening walk on the Golden Gate bridge, when trust and comfort held our hands – what else is there to feel but quiet content?

There may be things I do want to forget, but oh so much more I need to remember. I call those joys again to life – I infuse them into now, so that there is room for little else. And should tomorrow’s haze be further muddled by this day’s din, I will choose to remember.

*Phillipians 4:8*


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