I listened to Brichot, and I was not alone with him. As, for that matter, I had never ceased to feel since I left home that evening, I felt myself, in however obscure a fashion, tied fast to the girl who was at that moment in her bedroom. Even when I was talking to someone or other at the Verdurins, I had somehow felt that she was by my side, I had that vague impression of her that we have of our own limbs, and if I happened to think of her it was as we think, with annoyance as being bound to it in complete subjection, of our own body.
Marcel Proust, The Captive, p. 334
As Marcel is leaving the party he finally thinks of Albertine once more: ". . I felt myself, in however obscure a fashion, tied fast to the girl who was at the moment in her bedroom." He compares it to the feeling that one has of one's own limbs, which you on some level recognize as being there, but don't consciously consider - and I would add, appreciate. Marcel grumbles, "if I happened to think of her it was as we think, with annoyance as being bound to it in complete subjection, of our own body." when my first year students read Linden's pumpkin book (The Accidental Mind, our neuroscience book) they're always amazed at the fact that the brain "hides" a lot of information from us because it apparently doesn't think we need to know about it; essentially, that it's distracting. The classic example, and the one that messes with their barely developed little minds, is how you never feel your clothes when you're walking because it was just distract you from more pressing situations. Linden also tells us that love and sex are other tricks that the brain plays on us - emotional and orgasmic coins - to get us to stay together to look after that hopeless little baby with the slow-developing brain. I wonder if we "forget" our lover, once the required commitment has been made, for a similar reason. Like our clothes, if we "felt" them all day long we'd never get anything done.