It is amazing how many memories a person can accumulate over seven decades of life. Most of my earliest memories revolve around my home and family.
The first event I recall with any clarity is the day my parents brought my baby brother, Jim, home from the hospital when he was five days old. Having spent those five days with my paternal grandparents and being told I was now a ‘big sister’, I was supercharged to be able to hold my new baby brother.
That day finally came and I learned my first important life lesson. Get ready for it, now. Drum roll…We don’t get what we want every time!
I wanted to hold him standing up.
I had been the ‘little sister’ for my almost three years of life, with two older brothers. Being a ‘big sister’ was a big deal to me.
I had to settle for sitting in the big arm chair and holding him on my lap, and in my arms, for a few minutes. Then I had to let them take him back.
I remember nothing about the remainder of the day, but knowing my track record after that, I would say I found a place to get alone and POUT until I got it out of my system.
My baby brother was born in early spring.
The next event I remember must have happened during the first Christmas Season after Jim was born. Mom and Dad took me and my two older brothers to a department store to SEE SANTA CLAUS!
I had been told I was going to really see Santa Claus!
Once again, I was not given the whole picture. I was not told I might have to wait in line for my turn to sit on Santa’s lap, get my picture made with him and my big brothers, and tell him what I wanted for Christmas.
Apparently, many other children were excited to be seeing Santa Claus, too. I was just a few months over three years old, but I can still feel the frustration and, yes, anger I felt that day.
By the time my big brothers and I got to visit with Santa, I was totally out of the mood to feel excited.
Disappointment. More pouting.
Not the best pattern to start making childhood memories with my ‘little brother’.
But guess what?
He became my first playmate in the spacious yards surrounding our little house and my grandparents’ house.
I went to school first and learned to read. After that, Little Golden Books became our best friends. “Read to me” was something I heard every day.
It is hard to believe how quickly the years went by and we grew up.
School years ended and he moved to another state. Childhood ended and life took us our separate ways.
But we still get together from time to time, and the memories remain.
Note: I started writing my Memoir shortly after our parents passed away four months apart in 2012 and 2013. I wanted to remember as much about our early years together as possible.
The intervening years had pushed childhood memories deeper and deeper into my subconscious mind. Memories of my paternal grandparents’ house, our second home, had grown dim and I could not “walk from room to room” in my mind, as I CAN NOW.
Disciplined ‘remembering’ brought those days back so clearly, I can literally remember the placement of the furniture in their house.
In coming stories, I plan to share more memories of growing up in Piedmont North Carolina. Who knows what memories are still buried and lie waiting to be excavated!
This is my first story written to be published first on Medium and subsequently shared on Vocal. I hope readers will enjoy this one and every story to come.
First published on Medium.com
About the Creator
I believe in the magic of words, love, and tenacity. There is a world out there that needs to be explored, researched, and written out to try to make some sense of it, and to make a better place for the children of tomorrow.