I am on vacation with all of our children (John and his wife Ashley, Andrew and his wife Samantha, and David) and we are making memories. They are stored in my brain and my heart, and I will rely on them in the years to come to bring joy to my life. Until, God forbid, I forget.
I’ve been taking morning walks during which I think about remembering and forgetting—-and the strange unknown space in between. I once saw a child (at a resort pool in Indonesia) who was in a similar space. He wasn’t drowned yet he wasn’t drowning anymore. He was laid out on the pool deck somewhere between the two places. I thought then, and again now, that we don’t have words for the in-between spaces of life and death, remembering and forgetting.
Seems to me that Alzheimer’s is one word to describe the long journey of between-ness. When I think of it in these terms, the disease feels almost spiritual and I am less afraid.
P.S. That boy survived, and I’m sure the experience is one he and his mother would rather forget. Yet, I think time in the middle space made them love life and making memories all the more.