Memories, may be beautiful and yet…


Like the corners of my mind

Misty water-colored memories
Of the way we were
Scattered pictures,
Of the smiles we left behind
Smiles we gave to one another
For the way we were
Can it be that it was all so simple then? 
Or has time re-written every line? 
If we had the chance to do it all again
Tell me, would we? could we? 
Memories, may be beautiful and yet
What’s too painful to remember
We simply choose to forget
So it’s the laughter
We will remember
Whenever we remember…
The way we were…
The way we were
– The Way We Were, Marvin Hamlisch

With the passing of Marvin Hamlisch this week, I’ve been thinking about the songs he wrote and the meaning they have for me. I was able to have the extraordinary opportunity to see him conduct the New York Philharmonic with Idina Menzel a few years ago, and will always treasure that experience. I think The Way We Were is particularly meaningful for me right now.

Memories associated with having Moebius are strange. I remember things in detail thatIhave no idea why. I could describe to you in detail the layout of the old Kaiser Pediatrics building. And probably a myriad of other medical buildings, too. Yet I also must have blocked out major things, too. I am a little incredulous that my first real Moebius memories are from the 1994 conference, when I had been going to get-togethers in LA for two years prior to that. I don’t think I was traumatized or anything by them, but I truly don’t remember them! It’s odd.

Sometimes I think that, as these lyrics suggest, being able to forget is powerful. It gives you the ability to move on, to overcome obstacles. Of course I’m likely to take the other approach and obsess over things way too much.

So I aim for a balance: to learn from experiences and mistakes, but also to give myself the space to move on and distance myself from memories I don’t need to obsess about. And somehow, that seems to work…

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