A lost life…

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He said “I live in the old church, you remember the one we used to play football in the yard of? Its lofts now and I am on the 2nd floor in 1/2 the old gym.”

I paused for a moment, I did remember that church vaguely although I couldn’t place anything except the stone sign in the front of the church that I ran into when I was twelve and cracked my nose. I didn’t remember the insides of the church just that we had sat there many times and that the room was huge. “I do sort of,” I answered leaving the pause in the air between us.

“Cool, haven’t seen you in a long time. How have you been?” He asked.

An innocent question and one that I had heard a million times but I couldn’t answer it anymore this time than the previous million times. What is memory? Certainly my memory was less than others. Not of a lesser God but of lesser memory. How do you tell someone that you vaguely remember that you only vaguely remember them because of what happened to you. That is no reflection on them merely that you no longer remember anything other than small pictures like the frames that used to hang in your parents house. “I had an accident,” I start again leaving a pause not for effect rather because what comes next is difficult to talk about.

“Oh my God, I am so sorry.” he interjected, the painful pause drove him to talk.

“you shouldn’t be sorry. It was a moment, I don’t remember anything that led to up to it, or for that matter a lot of what came after that moment. I do remember waking up in the hospital. I am here now because the doctor’s advised me to go to familiar places. See familiar people. But the memories of my wife and children are to painful to not have. So I came here. To look around again and maybe jog the memories.”


Scott Andersen

IASA Fellow

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