The word cache, pronounced \kash\, is generally defined as a storage place; a place where one stores supplies or other items for future use. In the tech world, the word cache refers to a computer component that stores data for future access. Specifically, it is used to store data that may have been previously accessed and should it need to be accessed again, because of the cache, it can be more quickly found.
I am in no way a tech expert. While I love technology and have the knowledge and ability to use many technical gadgets and programs, I am definitely not an expert. Therefore, it is logical to assume that I will not be writing about the tech related use of the word.
My focus on the word is a different take on what one might view as a type of cache. Specifically, I am referring to the “cache” we are all born with, our brain. The brain is the human cache, it that place where we store the needed data, or memories that help us live our day-to-day life.
Memories are created from the situations and things we experience. One example of this is the formal education we receive, which provides us knowledge and important information to help us make decisions. Memories are also created through the social interactions we experience, as well as the things we read, participate in, see, listen to, and watch.
Another thing I think about when it comes to the word “cache” and memories, are the physical things that one can store and later access or use. These include things such as photos, documents, awards, music, books, and a number of other items. In fact, recently I was going through my collection of things I have saved over the years. One of them was a photo album containing various certificates and achievements I have received during my life. As I flipped through the pages, I was really excited; good memories flooded my mind. One that really stuck out was a certificate I received for participating in the Miami News Halloween Scary Story Contest in 1982. I was eleven years old at the time. This is the first real writing experience that I remember. Another item I came across was a short story I wrote my senior year in high school as part of an English class assignment. We were required to write a short story loosely based on a real life event. I remember my teacher thought it was so good she had me read it to the entire class. It is experiences such as these and the memories that came from them that have led me to want to write more today. These are such good memories.
Unfortunately, while we all wish the only memories we ever retain are good memories, ones that bring joy, happiness, and excitement into our lives, during our lifetime we will all have bad experiences resulting in memories we do not want. When memories like these appear we often wish we could just clear the cache and start over, or bury them so deep within our mind that they never come back. In reality, tying to suppress your memories only leads to greater stress and emotional problems. It is better to just face them, but instead of focusing on the emotional effects, evaluate the experience. Think about what actually happened, how it happened, and why it happened. Then consider the alternative(s). By doing this, you will have greater understanding and the emotional impact will be much less.
Remember, it is important to treasure the memories stored within your human cache. Utilize them. Apply the knowledge you have retained to help you have memorable experiences in both your professional and personal lives. Also, help others by sharing your knowledge and experiences when relevant. Memories and the choices we make based on those memories are what make us who we are. This reminds me of a quote I once heard. I don’t remember who said it, but it goes something like this, “Memories are the key not to the past, but to the future.”