Monday, September 14, 2009

Scared that I'll forget

Over the past few days I have been worrying, almost obsessed, that Cliff may fade away ... to me. There are times that I can picture a part of him, perhaps his chin, his smile, his eyes, but I don't seem to be able to focus on his whole face. I can see his chest, his legs, but not the whole of him. I can remember every tiny thing, freckles, the way his hair lay on his neck.

But I can't find him.

And if I do briefly, it's like the image is out of focus.

I am scared I will forget.

How can I forget? He was ... he is my world.

It makes me feel bad.

It makes me feel unbearably sad.

It makes me feel like I don't care enough if I can't remember.

It terrifies me.

I keep running to different rooms, grabbing photos and looking through them to reassure myself that he actually existed.

J-in-Wales, on her blog, has been concerned that her husband R will be left behind and forgotten by the world. Same subject - different tangent ... and she gives me the reassurance that it will be alright, but still ... I worry.

I think I need to JUST CALM DOWN


  1. Boo, i've often felt like this, worried that I can't remember the sound of his voice and his face. But as worriesome as it seems, he was such a big part of you, you will NEVER forget. Try not to think too hard about it, keep those pictures close for a comforting reminder...but don't feel bad, you won't forget.
    Big Hugs.

  2. We were leaving each other messages on each others blogs at the same time :-)

    Thanks CarrieBoo, I still feel like a rookie here, so good to have the fears assuaged xxxx

  3. :-)
    Well...honestly I still worry, but I know deep down I will never forget. I know easier said than done..but try not to beat yourself up over it.
    take care

  4. I think I need to just relax about it and it will come to me x

  5. so hard to know what to say. i feel the same way and yet if it sit quietly in my silent apartment, eyes closed, not even looking at my little shrines to him, i can see him so much more clearly. i can remember his different tones of voice for his different moods. i can smell him, his neck. i loved sitting beside him and smelling his neck. he always laugh at my fascination with the way he smell like salt air and pine needles.

    if i sit that quietly, no music, no sound, i can remember the feel of his heart beating under my hand as we lay to go to sleep each night. i can visualize his walk, the strides that ate up the ground as he would come walking over to me. i can feel the weight of his arms around me, holding me, and his fingers on my scalp as he finger combed my hair. he loved doing that.

    so i sit silently with my eyes closed whenever i feel completely overwhelmed or distraught. i don't think it helps advance my healing but it certainly keeps me from the edge of the abyss, a darkness i would not come back from.

    breathe Boo. just close your eyes and breathe. he's there. he's as close as your own heart.

  6. As you say, this has been on my mind too lately. I think it is a matter of focus - I can see all the individual details perfectly, but it is harder to put them together to make a whole person.
    I suspect it would have been exactly the same while he was alive - if you had tried to picture him exactly when he was out of the room, you would have found it just as difficult.

    It once took me a couple of hours to realise that R had shaved off his Christmas beard, purely because I wasn't really focussing on his face. How sad is that!!!

  7. I'm crying Susan, but I think it's because you've just helped me ... I managed to do some of that at my desk right now. THANK YOU. You have a calming effect on me, don't go anywhere! xxx

  8. J - you're probably very right, except that I guess it wasn't so important to us then to remember everything perfectly then ... and it is now, but I really need to stay calm about it, don't I ... because then it comes easier. Breath, breath, be still and it will pass. It is becoming my mantra :-)

    LOL about the beard. I've done that one too. And again, at the time it's not so important :-)

  9. Hello. I have amnesia and can't remember the last 6yrs of my life, I was fine before this started and I woke up one day paralysed and very sick, realizing I didn't only lose my mobility and health but also my memory was very hard but when I heard I had fallen in love with a man so wonderful back in December 2007 and couldn't remember a thing about him it was hard to take. I'll never really know what we had or what we could've had. My point is I understand what you mean, do not worry about it too much because the more you worry you'll end up focusing on this one thing forgetting the rest.. I wish you all the best, may you dream of him every night so his full picture stays in your mind.

  10. Slindy, thank you so much for this. I know that I do need to relax about it and it will be fine. But over the past few days I have been obsessing over it. Happily today I'm not. Who knows what I'll be feeling tomorrow!

    I can't imagine your situation at all. It must be very frightening for you, but I do look forward to reading your blog and watching you overcome the obstacles in your path, because you certainly sound like someone who will not let anything beat them!

    thanks again

  11. Boo, after reading your post on my blog, I sat and read your blog from beginning to end last night. What can I say?? I could not respond last night because I could not see through my tears. Our journeys have been so similar, down to hair falling out, eating cold baked beans out of a tin and a bunch of other things that I read along the way.

    And now I have to say, I too am worried about forgetting him, forgetting the things that he said or did, forgetting things that we did. I try so hard to remember and the harder I try the less I remember, so yes, maybe we need to forget a little so that we can remember.

    Thinking of you and hoping that you have found some peaceful moments today,


  12. Being a year and five months out from David's death, I went through this too. I was almost panicked that I was going to completely forget who he was, what he looked like, how he smelled. I still do sometimes.

    What I did early on was get a good bound journal and I started writing down all the memories I could think of. I included a few pictures along with way too. I took that with me everywhere I went, to bed, to work, on trips. I never knew when something was going to pop into my head.

    Someday, I may put more of those memories on line but for now, they are mine. And when I feel myself starting to "forget", I get that journal out and I read. It helps.

    Maybe give that a try!

    ((HUGS)) fellow widows!

  13. Lynette, thank you. I shall try that. Sometimes I share a memory on here already ... but I feel like being a bit selfish with them too :-) I like the idea of taking the journal everywhere so that you can record or retrieve as necessary :-) I will treat myself to a nice leather bound book or something like that xxxx

  14. Wendy, it stuns me too when I read someone's blog and find out that they have done or thought exactly the same thing. I do get comfort from that ... then feel sad that I am getting comfort from someone else's pain. I do know that being in touch with everyone here and on the Discussion Board that I use helps me enormously. It helps me sanity-check, it helps me to help someone else a lot, it helps me make sense of the feelings and behaviour that I display!!! I was never analytical before this happened, but I am today ... and I am now approaching it (the fear of forgetting) differently. So, even though I can't remember everything right this second, I will be surprised by random happy memories, time and time again, moving forwards. We all will. Keep in touch Wendy, I know your first year anniversary is approaching ... you might like to read "What Now" blog by J-in-Wales as she has shared a wonderful post about her thoughts upon reaching her own 1st Anniversary. xxx