It started out innocently enough...
Just chatting away about nothing really, then it reminded of some memory. "Remember that time..." I said to Steve.
"Um, that wasn't me."
As soon as I realized that it wasn't a memory I shared with Steve, but a memory I had with Jeremy, I was immediately embarrassed, then angry with myself for not remembering something about Jeremy more clearly. How could I confuse that?
But it's happened several times. And not just with Steve. I remember it happening in different forms not that long after Jeremy died. Talking to friends about something that happened and not remembering whether or not Jer had been alive for it. Listening to a song on the radio and not being able to recall if it had been released after he died or before.
These blurred lines between before and after can be so disheartening. It made me feel like I was losing control, and more agonizing, losing pieces of Jeremy. How could the memories I put on such a pedestal be getting fuzzy? What does this mean for the future?
The only comfort I found in all that was also realizing that it was just a sign of life moving forward...and that I was allowing it to happen. I held on so tight for so long, but eventually when you let other things seep into your life, you have to loosen the grip. I don't mean forgetting or letting go, but allowing the things that are here and now to change and grow, and knowing that Jeremy is forever stuck in yesterday. No new memories will be made with him, only in ache for him. No new experiences will happen with him by my side, only made with others or by myself.
The idea that I've embraced this evolution somehow is oddly comforting. Like, I'm finally getting to where I feel like Jeremy would want me to be. I might think harder before I blurt out a memory to make sure I've got the details right, but I know Jeremy would be proud of me for letting normal life seep into my bones a little more each day.