Remember when you fell in love? Remember how it felt? It all was so exciting when you turned that crisp first page.
Remember how you dreamed of how your future would unfold. The life you’d build together, adding chapters through the years.
Remember all the fun times – and banal times – you went through. The photographs you added; all those family memories.
Remember, then, what happened. How your life forever changed. The news that pierced your heart and left your world in broken shards.
Remember the confusion, the deep anguish, and the shock. The fairy tale was over, and the future was a fog.
Remember how you worked to redesign your shattered life. To start again, recover, and get stronger over time.
You cleaned up all the carnage, dealt with triggers and landmines. You processed your emotions, and you gave love one more chance.
And, yes, your life is better and you’re at a different stage. You look like you’ve recovered – but it’s hard to trust again.
We wish we could forget things. Pull the thorns out of our hearts. Erase the deep betrayals. Start afresh. Expunge the past.
But memory won’t allow that. Self-protection over-rides. We may believe they’re different, and will never stray again.
Yet, still there is a wince, a hesitation, or a sigh. Our mind says: “Look, forget it”, but our instinct warns: “Watch out!”
Perhaps the day will come when we are now completely free. When memories won’t affect us, and there’s no anxiety. I’d love if that could happen, and the armour could come off.
But maybe it’s a pipe dream, and we’ll always be on guard.