When Your Memories Start To Fade

{My mom is the little blonde second from the left. One more was added to the family when my mom was in high school}

We have all had those experiences that you wait for the memories to fade.

In fact, people will tell you that the memory will fade someday.

People will promise you that someday you won’t think about it every second of every day.

Who hasn’t had their heart broken or a dear friendship fade or lost someone dear to them?

I can remember feeling relief when I came to the place when a hardship didn’t cross my mind every day.

Then there are the memories you want to hold onto and you can see them slipping away.

No matter how hard you try to chase after them and keep them in the forefront…their memory fades too.

My Grandma Jeanne passed away five years ago.

I was named after her and her creative gifts have inspired me since I was a little girl.

I have tried to incorporate some of her beautiful day to day details into our own home and life.

I am go grateful for those little daily reminders of her and how she made life lovely.

Other memories are starting to fade.

Memories I can’t put into action.

I am starting to  forget the details of her face without looking at a photo.

My memories of her play through my mind like a flickering movie.

Off and on.  Off and on.

I will get a visual of a moment with her but it is only a glimpse.

I will remember being a little girl in her navy blue Mercedes with white leather interior.

Was it white or is my mind making things up?

I can remember the smell and remember what it felt like being there….but I don’t remember why or what the whole story was.

I am left with a lot of those.


Moments where I can’t find the whole story anymore.

And then I am afraid I will forget all together and they will be lost.

She played such a huge part in my creative dreams as a child.

She didn’t even mean to.

She didn’t talk to me about living a creative life.

She lived one.

She didn’t talk to me about music or art.

She had it playing throughout the house and hung it on the walls.

There are those memories that you want to let go of and hope they will fade into a distant memory.

Then there are the other memories that even though you long to hold onto them you know you can’t hold on forever.

I have already forgotten little details about my babies.

 Some days I tell Kelly I would give almost anything to go back to holding each of our children when they were babies.

So tiny and they smelled SOOO good!

When I feel like I am losing perspective and forgetting the details I go back to videos and photos.

They are my memory keepers.

I do that with my Grandma Jeanne too.

I put in one of her CDs or look at photos from my childhood with her and then my memories starting flooding back in.

What are your memory keepers?

How do you keep beautiful memories alive?


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  1. Shelly Rollins

    Oh Sweet Jeanne,,,,,,,the memories DO fade. The Good along with the bad! I lost a husband in a car accident back in 94 (I was 37) ironically on the way hthaome from flying a little sardine can of a plane.

    Of course i was a wreck,,,,,,and even MORE so, when someone staying with me THOUGHT they were doing me a favor by washing all his clothes and the linens….Where was his Scent? He was gorgeous, adventurous and loved me to pieces. I clung to each memory, each conversation.

    When my dear “Oma” passed, I couldn’t believe it. My grandmother was my Mentor, my inspiration, my hope and my History. She saved everything and although she lived a VERY select/aristocratic life,,,,,,in the early years,,,,,,she remade herself several times over….I loved her so….Still do!

    My mom passed a couple of years ago, she was my bestest, but we were SO different! She liked NEW stuff, and I loved the old.

    And, oh, so sorry to say I’ve lost SO many others in my 55 years. And yes, some of the memories fade……..

    But they come back,,,,at odd moments, and Old song, a piece of literature, a scent, an image. We can never Hold it All, my dear. But Those wonderful souls that have helped to build and touch our lives? They “come through” EVERY Day! In our actions, our thoughts, our prayers and our deeds.

    It’s delightful when an old neighbor/friend family member shares a memory or an antic. It’s JOYFUL when we pull out an old ornament or picture that triggers so many loving moments. YOU are the living, breathing legacy ……..Take Joy in that and you have the opportunity each and every moment and each and every DAY to Honor ALL of those you have loved and that have loved YOU!!!


  2. Anastasia

    Oh how I can relate to this post, I lost my dear Grandmother last year and she too has touched my life in so many ways that she would never know…somedays I can see her so clear in my thoughts that it brings me to tears when I think about how much I miss her
    and other days I struggle to make out her face, I never want to let her go from my memories…such sweet memories!

  3. cathy

    What an absolutely gorgeous post my friend!!!! I lost my mum 10 years ago this year and she was my everything… but I make sure that I talk about her and my gorgeous dad to my kids all the time…. I share recipes with my kids from their nan and we bake together knowing that my mum loved to bake….Oh so many things I could tell you….smiles c xo

  4. Jeannette Ellison Shaffer Sowman

    Dearest Jeanne,
    Thank you for the sweet memories! That picture of your Grandma Jeanne and all of the children except Malinda was taken on a Sunday morning before church. Mom had made our matching navy and white dresses. The individual touch was that we each had a different color velvet ribbon for a belt. It was very bright and sunny that morning, and I was frowning because the sun hurt my eyes. Dad took so many pictures that morning. It was taken in our backyard on Frankfort Avenue which was on a gravel road up the hill behind Cascade Plunge. Whenever I look at that picture I’m so disappointed that I was not smiling, but it also makes me more accepting of my children and grandchildren when they don’t smile in pictures. Thank you for the faded and fading memories! I love photos taken through the years! They bring back so many memories! This one photo brought back 3 years of memories on a hill in Birmingham, Alabama.

    Love, Aunt Jeannette

  5. Donna Woods

    Such a beautiful post! Memories are kept alive at my house with the photos and scrapbooks. I have kept my Momma’s purse and it’s contents. Sometimes I open it and look through her things…

  6. Kellie

    You have gifted us today with a lovely post.

    BTW – I thought the lady sitting in the swing was you.

  7. mgriffin

    Such a lovely post Jeanne. The family reunion we just had helps tremendously to keep the sweet memories alive in my heart, along with many wonderful old copied photos I brought home:)

  8. amy

    i rememeber her voice. i love hearing our mom and her siblings voices, too. i love that sound, and it always melts my heat. i cherish her way of talking, too. darlin’. sweet memories, jeanne.

  9. Melinda

    What an absolute beautiful post Jeanne!! I lost my only brother when he was a baby, and it has been so long now that he has been gone. So my mom gave me a few of his things and I have a couple of photos to remember his sweet face.
    But the one thing I do remember is rocking him to sleep in the rocking chair. This was a big deal for a little girl!! 🙂
    Hope you have a blessed week.

  10. Deborah

    I think you look just like your grandma. What a special picture to have. Just signed up for the third class with you. Can’t wait.

  11. Lana@whatsthestorymorninglory.com

    Beautiful post Jeanne.
    My father passed away 6 years ago. It was my moms birthday yesterday and I know she misses him terribly on these special days. Lifes changes can be difficult to deal with. I too wish I could go back and hold my boys as babies again, I so miss that now that they are grown. Its making me cry just thinking about it. I think I need to watch some videos of them when they were little today.

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