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Lines in the sand

I recently used the expression 'Draw a line in the sand' and when I said it, I had a vivid memory of my first love drawing for me in the sand, while we were walking on the beach one night.


It's so strange how some memories can be so strong that they feel like you can almost step right into them and re-live that moment. I can still see the look on his face as he drew the big heart in the sand. We stayed on the beach for a long time that night. I had never seen the beach at night before (not that I can remember anyway) and I was struck by how the moon lit the beach and it's never left me. I wonder if I was by myself that night - if the memory would mean as much or be so vivid. How many memories do we hold on to that take place while we're alone? I'd imagine, not too many.
I wonder why it is that we remember some things, but not others. Why is it that some people stay with us no matter how long it's been, even though they were in our life for such a small fraction of time? Some days I can't remember what I had for dinner the night before, and yet - that night on the beach took place nearly 20 years ago and the memory is still as strong as ever.
My husband has very few memories he holds onto. It's something we've discussed in great length. He can't remember much at all about his childhood or his first girlfriends or details about the love of his life before me, even though they were still sharing a home not 4 years ago. But he remembers of our first kiss and the moment he told me he loved me for the first time just as much as I do and in great detail. So why is it he wipes out so much about his past, but holds onto the things that are about me? I know I'm not the only thing in his life that has mattered, and yet I seem to be the only thing he cares to remember in any meaningful way.
He's not the only one that has a selective memory though. It's really strange. There are things I can't remember at all about my ex-husband and we spent nearly 10 years together. When I close my eyes, I can barely remember his face. Yet, there are some people that I can see in my mind's eye, as if they were here yesterday; when I haven't seen them in years on end. So why is it that if we have selective memories - I can still remember things I wish I could forget (the really bad stuff that I'd erase in a second)? I suppose there are just some things that we can't explain or ever truly understand.

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