Monday, April 18, 2011
Death and the Loss of Memory
Our loved one are associated through the bonds of memory. We remember departed relatives and friends often through the memories of others as well as our own. We may reminisce over a lost father or mother with the surviving spouse or with one close to that parent.
I often asked my mother about the life of my father, Harold Groothuis, who died when I was eleven. Of course, I had many memories of my father, but many had faded from my mind, given how young I was when he was killed in an airplane crash. Thus, whenever I wanted a detail about Dad's life, I would ask Mom. Or, we would simply discuss events we both remembered about Dad.
Now Mom is gone, and with her departs these conversations about my father. There is no one left who knew Dad as well as Mom--although some relatives remain with their memories of Dad. So, in a sad way, I have lost both my mother and many of the memories of my father as well. This is life "under the sun," East of Eden.