It turns out that, although I thought I had set my email program to archive emails letters I did not delete, I hadn’t. We changed providers and poof! fifteen years of email gone. I have been trying to recover them from backups with limited success. I suppose we could check with out former provider to see if there is a grace period before they wipe accounts….
Not all the email is gone: I have Gmail accounts, and that mail is untouched. But I had four accounts from our house domain name; two of those were inconsequential. One account was simply a notification account for comments from this blog and Facebook, one was an account I was in the process of making my business email, since the Gmail I use for that purpose is simply bulky, and I am trying to get away from using Gmail, anyway. Right now, all that last account has is email forwarded from Gmail.
The other two, though… One of them predated my Gmail accounts. Although it had increasingly silted up with spam, there were a lot of personal messages in there from years ago. The more recent account I set up three years ago, and was for strictly personal messages. I never used it for anything but email to and from actual people. I checked it religiously because when an email showed up there, it meant something.
I have lost email from people I will never be able to speak to again; I have lost email from people I am very unlikely to ever see again. Some of these emails were painful, but even so, I treasured them.
I have bad memory; sometimes when I look back at my life I find myself asking “Did that really happen? Am I remembering that or just imagining it?” Emails help ground my reality. I need that grounding.
I hate being stupid.