Please Don’t Forget Me – Lindsey Hardison

Please Don’t Forget Me 

Being forgotten has been a concept I’ve struggled with my entire life. I’ve always lived with the feeling that I am more invested in my relationships with others and that I’m disposable and never leave an impact on anyone I ever meet. When I leave people’s lives, I feel as though they never look back or think twice. Just another face to be forgotten… someone who they once knew, where years from now they may see something that reminds them of me, but then that’s it. A passing thought. I have always believed that I never had the capacity to hurt someone. That me leaving would never leave a hole in someone’s life. 

As I type this, it sounds more morbid than I realize. I don’t mean it in a way that if I were to die no one would care. I mean it in a way that I’ll always be a side piece in everyone’s life whom I meet. I am fun while I’m there, but everyone moves on and doesn’t miss me being a part of their life. I don’t care if people forget about me after I die because at that point, I no longer exist so it doesn’t matter. 

Some things need to be forgotten though. We forget things constantly every day. Dreams. Why we walked into a room. A text saying, “we got home safe.” The name of a song we like. Forgetting is a part of life, but for some reason the feeling of being forgotten keeps me awake at night. 

There could be many things it stems from. One most prominent is that I now no longer speak to any of my childhood friends. I don’t forget about them, but I carry the belief they forgot about me. I think it is because they’re the ones who decided to no longer be friends. Perhaps this fear stems from abandonment issues. These people who I considered to be my best friends could so easily leave me behind and find a new best friend. 

Talking to someone in class and asking “Weren’t we in the same class last year? Allie, right?” To which they respond, “I don’t remember! What’s your name again?” Forgotten. 

I care a lot about people, and I try to remember things about everyone as much as I am capable. When someone tells me we’ve met before and I don’t remember, it hurts me probably more than it hurts them. When I don’t remember someone’s favorite song or a story they told me, I feel horrible and I ruminate on it for days. Perhaps I have a fear of forgetting as much as I do being forgotten. 

A boy who I spoke to every day for months and trusted could easily leave me behind and never speak to me again, probably never once second guessing his decision. Seeing on social media how he has a new girlfriend after not even a month has gone by since he told me he thinks he loves me. Begging to talk to him for some explanation on how he could just leave and so easily never talk to me again after being so intertwined in each other’s lives. Giving so much for him to just up and leave. Did I leave that little of an impact where he didn’t even have the human decency to have a conversation with me on what the fuck happened? After talking every day, he just vanished, not a care in the world if I was still there or not. But I wasn’t forgotten. Months later he gives me that 1 a.m. “hope you’re doing well” text. Give me a break. 

I find that an unhealthy habit of mine is that I try to leave traces of myself behind to avoid the inevitable “being forgotten.” With my most recent breakup, I left him with a water bottle so that every time he drank, he would be reminded of me. I left him with headphones so whenever he listened to music, he would be reminded of me. I left him with my Netflix login so whenever he’d watch a new movie or show, he would be reminded of me. Unhealthy, unhealthy, unhealthy. 

There’s a difference I find between letting go and forgetting. Part of me left him with those things in hopes he’d realize he made a mistake and ask to get back together. If I asked for them back, it’d be confirming we’re actually broken up and no longer together, which we are. By taking those things back, I would be letting him go and not forgetting him. I could never forget him. But in my mind if I have those things back, he would forget me. What’s hard is that I can see how my thought process doesn’t make sense, but it’s that deep rooted belief that people just don’t care about me as much as I care about them. 

I am so emotional. I love being able to experience all the emotions that come with life. I try to not make decisions based on my emotions, but they overcome me and it’s hard silencing them. Because I am so emotional, when I get to know someone, I give them all of me. Both the good and the bad because that’s what makes me human. I don’t see a point in hiding parts of myself, it’ll come out eventually. 

I have dreams about forgetting too. I have the same reoccurring dream that I forget I am late to work and get in trouble. 

I am just rambling at this point. I don’t know the point of this piece, or if it could even be considered a piece. I have worked myself up writing about it. Forgetting is a part of life and I need to accept it. People forgetting me has no impact on my worth as an individual.  

Please don’t forget me.