Opinion, by Pia Granjon Lecerf
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – One funny story that I guess can be shared with people who have been living in different places: On this day, my child is talking to me about something that he remembers and he clearly really wants to share his memory with me. My neurons are connected to the complex driving around the Clube do Flamingo at 6PM on this Friday evening.
I finally realize my boy is talking to me, so I ask: “Erm … where was that? In England? In France or here in Rio?” I feel confused for a few seconds; my brain can’t anchor to a precise geographical place. M. answers with the up most cool attitude like kids can do: “In England;” right, now I can join the discussion.
It seems to be working as if I have ‘places memory drawers.’ In my case, I have the ‘England drawer,’ ´France drawer’ and ‘Brazil drawer’; well, and in the “France drawer,’ I also have sub-drawers as we have been moving within the country several times.
From time to time, it happens that I perceive something here and now when in reality it is connected to another time/ location. For example, I can see a car in the street and I think “Oh! That’s Babette’s car!” when Babette was a friend from England.
Or, I spot the silhouette of a person walking and again I go “That is Sylvie!” Sylvie being a French friend or, another example, I can see people that I know here in Brazil when I am back in France; and here I am, instantly taken to another place/ time where I have been living before.
The second after, I realize that I am not in that place my brain took me to. Confusion or brain in action tidying up the all the information it has to sort out?
That takes me to one of my favorite thinking points: the concept of time/ the way our brain does store our environment. I believe that we do carry information since the very first second our brain has been complex enough to register them, at an unconscious level which comes first.
That was within our mother’s womb. And those memories are brought back to us when we need them. Some we will recall, some we won’t. I do not think time as a linear process. Conscious and unconscious brain in action! One nor being more important; we need both.
Some authors mention parallel times, eternity… Maybe, I don’t know; those words are too big for me; I can only talk about what I have experienced.
Have you experimented that ‘drawers mix-up’ as well? This kind of ‘time collapsing’ moments? Personally, I feel it is both a nice and a strange experience! Nice because only nice memories come back apparently and strange as this is something out of our control.
Isn’t a very common feeling that time flies so fast from our present time to our past? How about, for a while, stop thinking in terms of past – present – future for being in who we are and what we do? How about letting go of time pressure?
Wishing you a beautiful week!
Pia Granjon Lecerf, life coach