I am an inconsistent memory keeper at best. I have more unfinished projects than finished ones. You know how that goes. I am sure you’ve been there at some stage in your memory keeping experience.
And yet, I keep at it. Despite the unfinished albums. Despite the incomplete journal entries. Despite the unsorted ephemera. Despite the time commitment it requires. I keep at it, because I want to record the moments, the memories, the stories.
We are human. Which means we will forget things. Sooner or later, the edges of the memories stored in our brain will start to chip away. Whenever that happens, I would still want to be able to remember all the big and the small moments. I want to be able to relive a hopefully well-lived life.
Each day we do, see, read, hear things that will contribute to our future selves. To record those things is to record a proof of life. In the simplest of words, memory keeping to me is proof that “I was there”.
I was there in that moment when as kids we would scramble up to our building’s rooftop to dance in the rain.
I was there in that moment when my brother somehow got his ankle hurt so bad on the merry-go-round that he had to get stitches.
I was there in the moment when I cried like a baby after watching Titanic.
I was there in the moment when we played Holi in our hostel compound with mud (yes!).
I was there in the moment when Ankur and I spoke for the very first time.
I was there in the moment when I surprised my parents with a short visit home for Diwali.
I was there in the moment when I totally surprised Ankur on Valentine’s Day (it was a good one!).
I was there in the moment when I started my incomplete Project 365.
I was there in that moment when our families showered us with flowers after we got married.
I was there in that moment when I discovered this tiny little record shop in a tiny little lane in North Beach in San Francisco.
I was there in the moment when Ankur and I woke up to a magical rainbow on the day of our first anniversary.
I was there in the moment when a group of 14 (or was it 15?) people went to see Gone Girl one Saturday night.
I was there in the moment when my girlfriends and I had marathon chats discussing upcoming wedding plans.
I was there in the moment when I celebrated my birthday with both my parents and my parents-in-law present.
I was there in the moment when my brother showed me his apartment on Skype.
I was there in all these moments and more, and I have lived all these moments and more.
I capture these moments because I live, because I experience life. Because I want to remember my story and relive the moments, the life. And because Dr. Who says it best, “We are all stories, in the end.”
Image by Death to the Stock Photo. Edit and type by me.