One of my earliest memories is a snippet of a moment. A single snapshot of random life. Held in my memory as just still frame. But seen from my perspective, and real enough that I know it wasn't a picture I later saw somewhere, but something seen with my own eyes.
I couldn't have been more than 3. I was standing, in the kitchen. I can almost feel the red and brown squares of the linoleum beneath my bare feet. The yellow-greenish color of the oven in front of me. Staring up at the brown cabinets. The skinny cabinet, just to the left of the oven was open. I remember, clearly, the jars of baby food lined up neatly on the bottom two shelves of the cabinet, so high above me. They were green and yellow, tiny jars. The round glass ones, with metal lids.
And that's it.
There's no sound or smell associated with it. No feelings at all, other than curiosity about the jars. I was just there, looking.
I wonder, though... what was it about that moment that embedded itself so strongly in my memory? Why is it 30-something years later I remember it so clearly? Why has my mind held on to that, when it's forgotten so many other (much more useful!) things?
And that leads me to wonder... what are the first memories my kids will have? Will it be something big and exciting? Will it be something frightening? Will it be a quiet, loving moment with me (oh, how I wish it to be this!)? Or will it be a random moment of the mundane?
Right now, E says he remembers when he was in heaven before he was born (a conclusion he came to all on his own; we've never told him that's where babies are before they're born). He says he remembers "just a'waitin'". It's an interesting thing. But I wonder if he will hold on to this, or something else will replace it.
The kid, well, he just starts to make up fanciful stories about his first memories when asked (i.e. after he heard what E said, he just expanded on that). So I'm not really sure what it truly is. Likely, neither is he.
But, seeing as how I never talked about this particular memory until a few years ago (and not for any particular reason, other than it never came up), it seems plausible that they may not even realize right now what their earliest memories are.
So I'm curious... what are your earliest memories? Also, do you think there's a reason why those particular things have stuck with you?
Today's Lesson: The mind, and memories, are tricky things. We never know exactly what they'll hold on to, or why. Sometimes the things we most want to remember (a particular look of a loved one... a fact for an important test... our babies' first words) seem to be lost. While the seemingly unimportant (where baby food was stored when we were toddlers) remains.