When I look at old family pictures and memorabilia, I see faces stuck in time. It recalls moments of life that meant something special. An event that calls for it to be documented, though not always recalled. These repositories of life events was made possible because these moments are worth recounting. Memories are a fragment of time passed. As life continues on, we constantly create memories that are stored in our brains. As present becomes past, it serves as an essential record. This record isn’t just simple information, it has the power to influence us. At the same time we are powerless to change it. Memories directly affect us, our identities and beliefs are intertwined with them. While time for me is the great unmovable entity, memory is a powerful, inseparable but at times an undependable companion.
A Powerful Companion
I cannot dispute the fact that my identity is directly influenced by my past. Good or bad, these experiences helped to define who I am. Memories are powerful reminders of the effect of one’s actions. It is easily recalled but difficult to forget. Memory is like a sting in one’s mind. It cannot be easily removed and manifests itself prominently. Memories cannot be simply deduced as plain information that is stored in the brain. It plays a powerful part on a person’s psyche. I believe that the things I hold true and real are influenced by my experiences. At times I wonder what is the purpose of recalling these events? Will my identity be different if my experiences didn’t influence me? The past keeps record and my memories serve as the powerful chronicler. That is why it’s power should never be neglected.
A Deep Well
This power manifests itself through emotions. It’s like a deep well where emotions flow out as a person recalls these experiences. It evokes an emotional response when certain memories are recalled. Though it is easy to say that it’s easy to forget, doing it is a difficult task to accomplish. We humans are designed to have deep interactions with each other. We share our own personal life to another that is important to us. These interactions create intimate memories. Because of this, it can be a source of great joy or a big regret. Emotions play a big part on how we view these memories.
Unreliable and Finite
As powerful as memories are, one cannot rely on it fully. It’s unreliable and finite. That is why recollecting a certain event accurately is a tall order to accomplish. As essential memories and experiences are to shaping my identity, it’s inherently unstable. That’s what makes it fascinating and terrifying at the same time. It can be liable to modify, create false memories, and even fake an identity. The brain certainly is an imperfect machine.
It’s a sobering sight for me to see a person who suffers dementia. To see a human being be a mere shell of who he/she was, not able to recall his/her name is truly a poignant moment. Humans are more than just flesh and blood. Through memories one is able to find one self. For it to be gone, no matter how other people recall who you are it won’t matter because the brain cells are no more. What remains are mementos of life spent.
To conclude, memories are something that is truly “ours”. It’s personal and an essential part of what makes us us. It truly is our companion and compass. While we are powerless to change the past, being able to remember what happened before, we are still able to veer ourselves in the right direction. Even though it has power to influence us in the present, we are still able to do things that could change our future. I guess the most powerful thing we can do is to remember and reflect. These fragments of time serves as a chronicle of where we are right now and where we are headed.