Memories identify who we are

Memories. What if we had none? What if I asked you what you did yesterday, and you couldn’t tell me because you have no memory of it? What if I asked you what things were like when you were a kid, and you had no memory of it? If we had no memory, we would be a different person – just an empty, functioning being – a robot!

You would not know the joy of the birth of your first child. You would not remember that you love your spouse. You would not know the way to work or what your occupation is. You would not remember your parents. You would not remember the kind words your best friend offered you yesterday, or even who your best friend is. The same goes for the recipe for your mother’s apple pie.

Here’s a list of uncategorized, spontaneous remembrances of mine. Maybe they will spark one or two for you.

First day of school

My favorite grandparent

Catching lightning bugs in a jar

My first car

The day my mother died

The Flood of 1985

My 17th birthday party

The day my husband and I moved into our new house

4-H camp and the girl who sleepwalked

Interviewing for my job at United Way

Methodist Youth Fellowship at Orlena

Learning shorthand in high school

Getting caught (behind the outhouse) smoking my first and only cigarette

Christmas on the farm

Receiving a Bible, with my name inscribed, from a co-worker

Attending my first funeral at the age of 13

Our family vacation to Canada in the 1957 Chevy

Always having a dog

The Hereford bull who chased me from the barn right up to the front porch

My one and only fender bender

All the Piercy family members coming back to the farm for Thanksgiving

Motorcycle Sundays with my husband

Losing my job and being unemployed for a summer

Losing a writing/essay contest in junior high

My favorite Bible verse

The sudden death of my sister

These are all my memories. They are many and varied, good and bad, but they have all made me who I am. What an empty span my life would be if I couldn’t recall any of them! What would be the point of living? What a drudgery each day would be if I could not mark anything up to experience and store it in my memory.

The blessing is that the older we get, the thicker the book. The chapters are endless! And isn’t it good that we can open this book and read a line or two to someone else and find that they understand? And, quite often, this causes them to open their own book and share a paragraph with us.

Memories bring us together, a closeness that can last a lifetime. Undying friendships have been built on memories. New friendships have been established because of them. Families are tethered to one another because families make memories. And, after you consider all this, one thing should come to mind. In the end, each one of us will be but a memory. Let’s hope we’ll be a cherished one.