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  • "I start experiencing on my own skin how an old person can often feel a true stranger in the present tense."

    - Giovanni Savino

    Yes, me, too. Thanks to Giovanni for saying it. For naming it. It's still hard for me to do!

    "Perhaps that’s one of the reasons why old people tend to re-live past experiences so much."

    - Giovanni Savino

    Perhaps. But also, as I am writing, I notice that I am consciously engaging IN THIS MOMENT with at least four other aspects of life that are important to me today even as I re-live my past experiences through story.

    First, I am integrating at a whole new level. I can speak now what I could not bring myself to speak then. Or perhaps what I didn't even know how to speak then.

    Secondly, I write today of my life experiences in the past because I am more aware of my mortality these days. I write not with the same fear of death that I had in the past but with more certainty. If I do NOT write these stories, they will not exist.

    Third, these are stories as seen ONLY through my eyes and experienced ONLY through my consciousness. That's because these are MY stories. Even as I am writing my stories of the past, I consider how anyone and everyone else who was present at the time may well have a very different story to tell...of the same events.

    And, of course, fourth, while I currently have little sense at the unconscious level of why I am writing these stories, I do have hope that the writing itself will reveal more of my unconscious to me. That would be a gift beyond measure as I see it!

    For me, it is not about being in the past or living in the past. It's about being in the NOW with those parts of myself that have a past.

    Who knows? Perhaps these and other reasons...conscious or unconscious...might be why other (old) people tell their versions of stories about their past experiences as well.

    [Photo by Barbara, attempt to catch the partial eclipse. Ahh! The Light! Minneapolis, Minnesota, May 20, 2012.]

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