Today, I lost several years of memories. The movie ticket stub from my first date, the little napkin note that my sister wrote me before my exams, the receipt from the time I went out to eat with my best friends for my last birthday…all of it is gone.
I suffer from a fear of forgetting, a fear that one day I will become old and forget all the memories that make up who I am, that shape my identity. I’m afraid of losing track of who I am in the large makeup of the universe. So I keep seemingly meaningless items. But each one of them holds a part of me, some time when I was insanely happy. When I’m feeling extremely sad, I sometimes take them out to remind me that it’ll all pass and it’ll all be better soon. So ever since I came home after five weeks of being away from home to find that you had thrown them away into the trash so carelessly, I feel like I lost a section of my brain. Memories are hazy. I’m going crazy alone in this void in my mind.
Let me write it all here then before it slips away.
How we glanced at each other in the dark in our own storybook perfection while another story flashed on the screen before us. Air-conditioning breezes drifting his smell so it clung onto my clothes long after I came home. I was still wearing that same smile for days.
How we laughed as she dropped all the food on her lap and stood up before it stained her mint green dress. Another had a low spicy tolerance but we were at a Mexican restaurant and everything burned the roofs of our mouths. I had a polka dot dress on and if I stared long enough down at my skirt when I looked up the sky seemed to be in the same print. Asking multiple people who passed by to take our pictures because we there was at least one out of all of us who didn’t like how she looked in the previous one.
How I could tell that she had been in a rush before catching her morning bus by the way the napkin was torn in the words “good luck!” There was a slight peanut butter stain in the corner.
How the cute theatre employee had torn a little piece of the ticket stub off before handing it back to us. “Have a nice days ladies. Enjoy the movie.” he had said, flashing white teeth. We giggled before disappearing down the darkness of flashing orange movie times on LCD screens.
How you scribbled a note on a sheet of paper to me the morning of my birthday saying that you loved me and that you hoped that I had a good day and did well on my exam. You probably didn’t know I kept that.
How I could see he put a lot of time in the drawing that he casually shoved in my direction. “For you.” he said, and then refused to have me pay for lunch.
How I came into the classroom and found a Starbucks wrapper with a scone waiting for me. Knowing that the friend who left it for me wouldn’t be in the hallways with me the next year and that she would be far, far away.
What made it worse was that you called it “trash” and yelled that it was useless junk to keep anyways. No sorry, no sense of regret at all. Thank you for throwing away several years of my life and then walking away like it was nothing at all. I can feel myself rumbling along the road of some garbage truck miles away, stained by a leaking orange juice carton, dumped into a mess of mutilated objects. I’m already forgotten.