Monday, May 05, 2008


Dad and I circa 1960. Nope, don't remember this.

Just how far back do your childhood memories go? We can generally remember things from about three or four onward, but is there a particular memory you have that dates pretty early in your life?

Of course this is a prelude to another story. Heh.

I have a snippet of memory of being in a neighbor's house from the vantage point of my father's shoulder. It was a basement house. There are (or were) several basement houses around here -it just makes sense. They are cooler in the summer, warmer in the winter. The drawbacks are no direct lighting, rodent and insect problems. If it rains enough, they can leak as well.

Anyways, the entrance and stairs were westward facing and dropped into a living room. There was a free standing propane stove on the east wall. The kitchen was to the southeast, and the bedrooms were to the north and northeast. The picture in my mind is sepia toned, but the place was a kind of tan inside.

The odd thing about all of this is there was a narrow window that I could have seen this house. The people that lived there moved out and the place was abandoned before I was two years old. I saw the place while it was inhabited. My parents figured I was about a eighteen or so months old when I was there.

Most of my early memories date far later than that. I'll never forget meeting my oldest friend Melvin. We were about four. His mother and mine were in the same bridge club, and we met at our house during a "meeting." We cut pictures of tractors from farm magazines and played with those. We've been buddies ever since.

I can remember my dog Ho Heen and I hiding from my neighbor in a ditch. I didn't want him to find me - I was out messing around, Mother had panicked and called him to help find me. He had spanked my butt in the past, so I was not very interested in that sort of thing. I was perhaps three or so then.

So - how far back can you remember?


RT said...

My memory goes back to 2 1/2 years of age.

Saw my dad chasing his girlfriend (one of many, so I'm told)down the street when my mom and I were returning home from my grandmother's.

Then they had the "big" fight and I remember my mom telling me to go get my red suitcase.

I remember looking in the wall length mirror in their bedroom watching them argue and threaten each other (no physical violence occurred). I remember not wanting to look at what was happing in a direct way, just via the mirror.

I think have memories before that:
My mom washing my dad's hair in the bathroom sink.
My mom and I sitting on the couch. She was eating a huge bag of pretzels. I asked why and she said because my dad was out with his girlfriend.

I think I was too young to be told such stuff. Wonder why I have trust issues with men? Hmmm.... It is a work in progress as is my adult relationship with my dad. I spent a lot of years (teen and early adult) bitter toward him. Not these days. I think understand more of their marriage and it wasn't totally his fault. Still, vows are vows.

Jeffro said...

Wow, RT, those are some tough memories. I was older before my parent's marriage fell apart and the fighting commenced. There was no cheating - they just didn't get along.

Stacy said...

I couldn't have been more than 2, but I remember going to visit my dad. I guess he and my mom were engaged and it must have been decided I needed to get to know him. I remember sitting on his lap at a desk and him helping me to write my name.

I lived with my grandparents until my parents got married when I was 3 and I remember crying in my crib and someone opening the door and looking in at me. No one believes me but I can describe which room in the house and where the crib was.

And the one no one believes....I have a mental picture of being on someone's shoulder (like you'd hold a baby) and looking out over a parking lot. It was warm and raining. Someone was holding an umbrella over us. I asked my mom once and I pretty much described the day I was brought home from the hospital. Who knows?

RT said...

I have those weird memories, too. I remember having a really bad dream and standing up in my crib.

Don't worry Jeffro. I'm a person who knows how not to allow those things ruin my life. I don't trust men very well, never have, but I am an adult now and I'm over it.