Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Dissociating Happy Memories

To start, if you are not familiar with dissociation read an entry from last year The 'D' In Dissociation to gain a better understanding of what it means.

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Today, yesterday, were bad days, despite being able to squeeze out a great blog post about our weekend. We have a general method of allowing ourselves to feel our feelings, on a mental health level we think it's a healthy thing to a certain point. Running away from them means they keep coming after you, and wallowing in them will make one drown.

After over 24 hours of feeling like we wanted to punch everything, cry, stare at a wall, run away, belittle whoever was hanging out in our head from minute to minute...we decided to work through the feelings, in an effort to eliminate what was bothering us.

Yesterday we wrote about our weekend visiting Kerry and her family, a friend from Twitter, for the first time. When James (The Boyfriend) read it he commented on how much we were able to remember, to which we replied what had actually happened after we had written it.

We though we did a good job, working together to get all the things we could remember in written order, and between sips of coffee sitting in the cafe we pulled photos off of our camera that we had taken over the weekend, well over 200 of them.

As we scrolled through them we recalled telling Kerry we have a photographic memory, after which she had laughed and asked why, if we have a photographic memory, were we taking so many pictures. We gave her some reasons, like the enjoyment in sharing our travel photos with people who read our travelogue (as well as our blog where we display our artwork and other photography), and also that much of our immediate family hasn't been outside of the United States, so we liked to share with them the beauty we have seen.

What we couldn't explain, and what came to us later, when scrolling through the photos was that while we can see something and immediately recognize it later, our recall without photographs is not good.

For instance, we can take a new route, to a new location once, and manage to return to it with no map, aided only by visuals. It's a skill that has impressed some of our boyfriends. However...if you ask us to recreate that route on paper from memory, we're crap. If that makes any sense.

So we finished writing the entry yesterday and went to find some photos from our collection to add...and then realized we had completely blocked out Mount Ida, both the first day when Kerry had taken us to view it across the valley, and the following day when we spent over two hours going up, walking around the top, and coming down, the mountain.

We felt distressed yesterday and it bled into today. It's something we know that happens, has happened, will happen...with bad memories. That we dissociate happy memories makes sense, we suppose, particularly since we were not all there (sharing consciousness) for the weekend, but because we journal now and record our lives for each other, it's not something that would have noticed in the past when we didn't write.

When we think about we hope dissociating happy memories is why we have very few happy memories from our life, because there has to be more...some...other than flitting images that are gone in a flash, barely graspable...ones that even pictures don't help some of us recall.

We know being forgetful is normal for all people, but to have not shared with each other, not all been present for, or remembered such a beautiful experience a mere two days later...guess it makes us sad and angry.

Taken from the top of Mount Ida - March 11, 2012
So, we spent the last 24 hours feeling icky beyond explanation, and when we explored the feelings we were having on our walk to the grocery, fighting back tears and anger, the first thing that came up was that, dissociating happy memories and feeling shitty about it.

A couple of us may also be having issues involving our stay in England being extended by an additional month, but for most of us we are happy about that.

Obviously there are positive and negative sides to Dissociative Identity Disorder...but so are there to being anybody, singular, plural....alive.

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