Do you remember the day your child was born?…. the birth of your grandchild?….your wedding day?.…the day a loved one dies?
The end of December is often a time of reflection, recalling many of the events from the last 12 months. 2018 was filled with many positive moments, some noteworthy and some long forgotten. I have to refer back to my photos and to my calendar to jog my memory.
The one day in 2018 I will never forget is the day my Grandson was born.
I remember the adrenaline cursing through my body when we received the phone call to rush to the hospital. I remember my daughter’s labour and how I wanted to alleviate her pain, yet how helpless I felt. I remember the love on my daughter’s face when she held her son for the first time.
I remember the joy I felt and how I was overcome with emotion hearing his newborn cries, seeing him for the first time, the miracle of life.
These memories are forever etched in my mind. I vividly remember the details of that day.
Yet, I cannot immediately recall what I did a week ago.
There has been a great deal of research done investigating the relationship between emotion and memory. We create longer lasting memories in emotionally charged situations.
This is a complex subject with many individual variations.
Events surrounded by positive emotions are usually remembered better than events surrounded by negative emotions.
Different emotional states may impair memory. Strong emotional states can result in persistent vivid memories of stressful events (PTSD).
Gender differences influence memory. Men and women may remember events differently.
I can look back on my own life and clearly recall details from emotional events that occurred many decades ago. I can also remember how I felt on that day and tears (of joy or sadness) can easily resurface.
the birth of my own children……. the timing of events on that day, the colour of the socks I was wearing, even what I had to eat that day…….my feelings of relief, euphoria and love
my Father’s funeral…….how my body would not stop shaking and my daughter held my hand to steady it, memories and photos shared that day, the blue sky…….an overwhelming feeling of sadness
my daughter and son-in-law’s wedding…….the beaming, genuine smiles on their faces, the look of love in their eyes, the ocean breeze…….my tears of love and joy
I think most of us have vivid recollections of events when we were in a heightened state of emotion. We can recall details from that day and how we felt.
The end of the year is often a time we reminisce on the special moments of the last 12 months. 2018 was a good year for us, creating many memories with our loved ones. What events took place? What did I do? Where did I travel? What do I remember?
I do know that I will never forget the day in April that my Grandson was born, an emotional day filled with intense feelings of gratitude, joy, and love.
What day will you remember from 2018?