I hate to admit this so publicly, but one of the side affects of my stroke has some gradual memory loss. The way I combat is of course to write about the past or keep learning something new on MasterClass (Current classes Paul Krugman and Sara Blakely) or on YouTube (how to fill out out an I-129 application and top ten features of your new Macbook Pro) or using time to learn mindfulness techniques. It’s a constant battle as workload increases for which I am eternally grateful, but also makes the day a strain as I struggle to ensure I don’t miss anything. And then at the end of the day, to remember to be present to my wife so we can share some intimate time.
And each day is a battle. People share stories about the past and some I don’t remember at all, or I have a vague idea, but the minutiae escapes me. Sometimes I cover by nodding or just agreeing with their interpretation and others time a huge blank is there and I wonder what else I am missing. There are memories from a time period that are etched into me, and there are others I wonder if i will ever remember again.
It’s a strange thing to think about when I gather more and more things in my life that are so memorable, but I want to hold on to some special moments like the day I told Papa I was going to practice law full time, or the day Preeti and I got married, and we managed a mini concert for our reception. I don’t just want to hold on to the joy, but the painful things like the us praying out loud as my aunt transitioned. I still remember that pain like a boulder on me.
Or recently the tears that flooded my eyes as I watched a young father guide his son walk straight. I watched them from the second floor of my place, and I watched as the son wobbled into varying directions and the father guided him straight, and in that moment, my throat tightened, and tears came as I thought about Papa and what my life would have been without him. And so I continue this struggle to hold on. I have great reasons to do so, and luckily I am surrounded by loved ones who are here to remind me, refresh me, and reconnect with me.
And as always I am grateful for that.