Memory Is The Secret Garden


Noah benShea


Some years back in my book Jacob the Baker I wrote: “Memory is the gentlest of truths.” And I thought I was damned clever to note that most of us remember what we want, forget what we want, and call it the truth.


Turns out, I wasn’t that smart. For a lot of us what we remember or forget is not something purposeful but something God awful that more happens to us than because of us.


This is Alzheimer’s Month. I’m not sure if I’ll remember that, but like anyone getting a little older, every time I forget something, or can’t remember something, I begin to wonder if this lapse is a harbinger of something worst, much worse.


I think its time we each pause and remember how wonderful it is if we can remember when to pick up our dry cleaning, what we promised to snag at the grocery stores, and who the person we fell in love with is when they come home. Or come to visit on Sunday afternoons during visiting hours.


Love someone with Alzheimer’s. Love them because remembering to be loving and who we love is the stuff of life. And to forget it is a sin, perhaps to God, but surely first to us.


Memory is the secret garden. As we get older, we discover it is the private place no less real and often more real than what passes for reality. Treasure your time in your secret garden.


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