Memories Muscles

What are the three most memorable moments — good or bad, happy or sad — in your life? Go!

This is a difficult question for me because my memories are often distorted. Bad memories tend to always trump good memories. The good ones are there, but I have to put a lot more effort into dredging them up and simplv *reliving* them.

So three good memorable moments in my life?

holiday giving charity festivus
Note from my friend Amy

1. Meeting Ledcat at the GLCC. It was a Sunday evening in late June 2003. We were at the old location in Squirrel Hill, in the front conference room on the right. I sat near the door and she sat near the window. There was chit chat about cats and rehabbing homes. I had no idea what was happening. But I’m sure glad it did.

2. Taking Laura’s niece Ava to greet the Easter Bunny at a former workplace of mine. After hunting for eggs and getting her picture taken, I walked her down to my office to use the restroom – she saw her photo on my desk and was very excited. I believe she was 4? That was a simple, lovely experience.

3. My friend Amy sent me $1 in the mail.

I know I am not alone as someone who can recall 400 awful memories at the drop of a hat, but has to consciously work hard to remember the good things. In fact, it is a skill that I use to help me calm my mind when it is in overdrive  – sort of like a gratitude list, but more concrete. I draw up the memory and close my eyes, trying to recall how I felt and where I was located and what sensations I experienced. It can actually be a tense experience because I have to run through those questions like a laundry list and cope with intrusive thoughts.

But it is worth it. I inevitably find myself smiling when I find the memory, even if I lose the smile when I open my eyes. Even smiling for a second is good. It doesn’t “fix” what is wrong, but it does strengthen the muscles of my memories so the next time I can recall that one specific memory a little more easily.

How do you flex your memory muscles?

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