On 7 March – in precisely 6 days –I will reach the milestone (of sorts) of being 20,000 days old.
10,000 days came and went without me noticing back in 1991, and the likelihood of reaching 30,000 (the date for your diary is 23 July 2046) is frankly minimal, so I might as well get the bunting out for the “big 20,000”.
I’ll probably have to make the decorations myself … I’m not sure the high street card shops do a roaring trade in balloons and banners for this particular occasion; and fire officers have already warned me not to even think about putting candles on a cake.
Probably best to keep it low key then…
Would have been a big cake though…
So as of today, I am the ripe old age of 19,994 days old … 19,994 days and 19.992 nights (I stayed up all night once back in ’82). My mind should be overflowing with memories from so many days; so how come I’ve forgotten so much?
If I could somehow add together all the random memories that float around inside my head, how many days would they add up to?
Is it wrong to feel almost “cheated”?
I want to recall so much from when I was a child … all the times I spent with my wonderful grandparents and relatives who have long since passed away … more moments from my teens … things I’ve seen, experiences I’ve had. Surely those memories must exist somewhere, but how do you retrieve them?
Have I tried so hard to block the darkest moments from my mind, that some of the happier times have just faded away completely? I have some photos, but do they trigger “real” memories, or just images of what my mind wants me to “remember”?
I look at the picture of me when I was 13, and even though the features are undeniably mine (and I wasn’t responsible for the haircut), I actually feel like this and other parts of my life were lived or experienced by someone I no longer recognise.
I don’t want to change the things that have happened in my life (even the “bad” things), because ultimately they all led me to Elaine … I don’t want to be a teenager again … all I want is the ability to remember; to get some sense of the person I was … the boy who shaped the man I’ve become.
And maybe then I can think about that cake.