Life consists of up and downs, right and wrong, black and white, yes or no, but what about the shades of gray? That matter in between who we are and who we refuse to accept being, the space between dead and alive, the range of emotions before we give others definite answers. At some point in our raising someone or something told us that everything should fit into categories and our experiences, particularly with people, should be able to fit into compartments and certain labels. Those close to us fall into the title of friends, family, or lover; there is no in between. But what of those relationships that don’t fit the mold? Where do they belong in the history of our lives? Those people who fill crevices we didn’t know existed within us never seem to be given the credit of a title and if they do, deep down we know that friend, family, or lover will never be accurate enough words to describe what they meant to us.
These are the people whose meaning and impact we could spend a life time trying to understand; these are the relationships we can never quite place in our hearts and much less explain to others. As time passes we move on and grow out of these people but their role in our life is nevertheless significant. In the steady pulse of our continuance and for the sake of ease our memory stores away these relationships until we have to put serious effort into remembering these people. We forget because it’s easier than accepting complacency in our inability to understand. Then one day a nostalgia grips us over something as simple as a new year’s eve sunset or the smell of fresh cut grass. Such small insignificant triggers set off a bullet into our memories and we can’t recall where the feeling arose from.
The unlabeled and misplaced connections we made to these significant others go unrecorded for so long that we cease to remember the details to the fabric of our being. So this is my vow to never forget, to record and remember the unexplainable. Someday when the nostalgia hits me and I feel a heavy weight or the lightness of a feather I will know who to pay tribute to. So this is for those relationships I can’t place and even those I can label because what more is there to me than memories?
Someday when I cease to remember, I won’t cease to exist.
(Originally written on Aug. 14, 2012)