I am listening to an eminent American Neurologist, he is describing how the human mind works, how memory is created and stored, how we use our thoughts, he gives examples of patients he has treated over a thirty year period to illustrate what he has learnt.
He describes the starting point of being a human as the sense of self, that any person with speech and the ability to communicate on any level has a cornerstone, a sense of self, the way they describe themselves may be warped or damaged, but they have a self-awareness as an individual, after self there are numerous functions and dysfuctions, but they all begin from the cornerstone. The essence of self.
He spends much time talking about memory and with it, amnesia, he says that whenever amnesia occurs, some loss of past memory however great or small you can guarantee one thing, that future memory will also be effected in similar measure. It is a balance, an equal, to forget the past means to forget what will be. This disappointments me, with it I see that I am faced with a personal inevitability.
I have been trying to forget, for such a long time now, it hasn’t worked. Some of my memories bring me pain in the present, they get in the way, they hurt, I try to ignore them, make them go away, divert them, overlay with new experiences, but they are always there. I understand from the neurologist, the only way I would avoid the pain of memory is to be ill, a stroke or a an episode or some brain trauma, to forget painful memories I would need to lose it all, past, future and with it any chance to be content in the present.
I have to make my peace to find it, to acknowledge the past, to be with the pain and to allow it, until it loses its potency, until it grows weak and fades. The past,the present, the future, it is all there, it all was and is and will be, for my mind to be whole and to live life fully now or in the future I must be witness it all, live it all, accept it all.