Tuesday, September 6, 2011

I Know Exactly Where I Was Standing When...

When it comes to meaningless conversations, I can repeat them back to you verbatim.  From about age four on.  Yet I have a hard time remembering what I wore yesterday.  Blocking from a play I did 20 years ago?  No problem.  I can sing all the songs too.  But I need to read pages in books often four or five times before all the information sticks.

It's annoying.  First because it takes me soooo much longer to read things.  But also because when you try to explain a mutual story, I will have to interrupt and correct you.  Not in a mean way but you will likely leave details out or paraphrase.  And strangely, I will remember every word and breath that happened.   But again, only for seemingly unimportant stuff.

But that bit about me aside, I think we all remember the intricate details of several major life moments.  With September 11th approaching, I thought I would take a little moment each day this to share a major life moment in all the silly details.  Not all serious.  Not all cheerful.  But for a variety of reasons, they have been important in my life.  Permanently etched in my brain and helped contribute to who I am today.

First up...

I know exactly where I was standing when my dad moved to Florida.

I was born just outside of Washington, DC.  But we moved to south FL when I was a little over 2.5 years old.  My mother and I flew down and stayed for a few days with my bestie Florida's family while waiting for our belongings to arrive at our home next door.  And my dad drove the green station wagon down with our Basset Hound.

I only have one memory of our DC home.  It is of being carried downstairs to our basement.  I remember the walls and looking down into the room and the carpet.  That's an odd story that might not translate as funny though. 

So my first complete memory is off my dad driving up to Florida's house.  I was upstairs as I had been taking a nap.  I can tell you every detail about the entire upstairs of Florida's house.  I remember looking out the window and seeing my dad drive up and the dog looking out the side window.  No idea what I was wearing though. It was a warm fall afternoon.  I remember the tree in front of Florida's house (That's still there by the way.  Florida and I climbed it a million times as kids.).  Walking out on the front porch with my mom.  The exact shade of green of the wagon (they're boxy but they're good).  I remember feeling so excited to see my daddy after being apart for several days.  The joy and excitement is tangible almost exactly 31 years later. 

For me, I suppose this memory really signifies the start of my life.  My entire childhood took place within about 10 blocks of that front porch.  The best parts of my childhood took place in Florida's house, actually.  The Laudy is my hometown.  And that block is where I learned to ride my bike, do cartwheels, trick-or-treat, and climb trees. 

The moment my dad drove up to that house feels like the first day of my life.  It is my very first full memory.  The first time I remember feeling like me- in regards to personality and emotion.

Oh and bestie Florida...she is the momma to my most amazing Godson J.  And she welcomed into the world the newest love of my life, baby girl E, this weekend.  In labor over Labor Day Weekend.  We've been best friends for nearly 33 years!  When I say on here that I am going to my hometown, I specifically mean that I am going to that same house where her parents still live.

What is your earliest memory?  Is it as random and seemingly insignificant (yet totally telling!) as mine?


Peachy Keen said...

I'm very similar with memories and my ability to recall insignificant details can make life awkward (in college my guy friends always assumed it meant I "liked" them because I remember the little things they said or did).

Its very special that your first memory is such an important part of your childhood! What a treasure to be able to recall "where it all began."

Wendy said...

I have that same knack for recalling the most seemingly useless details. Although I couldn't tell you my most defining memory.

Emily said...

IM NOT ALONE!!!! My parents, friends, and boyfriend find it SO weird that I can remember in exact detail SO many moments. I will say "remember that ___?" and of course they never do because it is some insignificant detail that my brain has stored away.....if only I could remember homework and school info that way :) Yay for having a memory of an elephant!


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