Bear with me a moment. I'm trying to explore the nature of something.
I've found that when it comes to memories, there is an inevitable point when what you know and what you feel and what you feel about what you felt back then all come together to create the perfect storm of nostalgia. This is long after the actual event. This often happens naturally, but can also be forced out of myself by creating the conditions necessary for a deep longing. It's been a while since she died, but I recall my mother when I enter the room she died in. I recreate the last sounds that came out of her, pull out the look on the doctor's face when he stopped pumping her heart, and then my sister making a phone call I could never have made.
The idea is not to mourn, or grieve, but to remember. And not just remember a moment, but a moment filled with feeling.
But there comes a half-way point when the bubbling in the water starts to subside before it cools and, finally, becomes still. My instinct then is to remember what I can dispassionately, and fall back on photographs, videos, and the recollections of other people. Through these things I can reconstruct, in a Frankensteinian way, the life of people I knew. This happens after the half-way point.
At this stage, truly unreliable narratives are formed. The kind that can't always be verified because they could be true, or just might not.
Just thinking aloud.