I thought I’d better go ahead and get this started. I’m now 51 years old and the memories are fading fast. Almost every day for years now I’ve been meaning to start recording my days, starting a journal, so I’d have something to pass down to my children and something to read in my old age. I’ve never started – and now I have to rely on memories of my memories.
I was lying in bed the other night trying to remember the first memory of my childhood. After thinking and thinking I finally decided my very first memory must have been lying in bed and singing myself to sleep. I was probably around 4 or 5 years old. I made up songs to sing and I still remember the title of one of them. “Stay On The Porch When It Rains”.
I was brilliant.
I slept in a little toddler bed in the room with my Mom and Dad. I kept asking for a little brother and I remember my Dad told me when I decided to sleep in my own room then maybe I would get a little brother. I guess I must have eventually started sleeping in my own room because my first brother was born June 28, 1963. I had just turned 6 years old.
I remember my imaginary friend John. He was the same age as me and had brown eyes and jet black hair. And my other imaginary friends were the 3 little pigs. Ok go ahead and laugh but I thought they were so cute. John and the pigs all talked with to me and we would hold very serious conversations about life and love. I wish they were with me now. I could use some good advice sometimes.
I know I had a happy childhood. Except, of course, for my Dad beating the hell out of me every time I was BAD. Later in life, when I asked my Dad about the beatings, he answered “You never got a whippin’ you didn’t deserve”. Wrong answer Dad. I DID NOT deserve to be beat with a belt buckle until my little legs were bloody just because I used one of my Mom’s envelopes. I DID NOT deserve to be beat with a belt (thank God the envelope incident was the only beating I got with the buckle) because I didn’t hear my Mom call me in for supper. He would wait behind the door with the belt and God forbid she would ever have to call me twice. I DID NOT deserve to be beat because I ran around the church one too many times with my little friends after church. I DID NOT deserve ANY of the beatings I got. What in the world can a child do to deserve being beat by a man who weighs over 200 pounds? Can a child even be that BAD? I was good – I can’t even imagine what he would have done to me if I’d really been bad. I’m just glad those days are over.
I’m not bitter. Do I sound bitter? I just didn’t deserve it…that’s all. I forgave my Dad a long time ago. That’s how he was raised – that’s all he knew. But I didn’t forget.
Ok…so all my memories aren’t all that happy and some are just downright painful. But my life has always been better than some. I can’t complain. And even if I did, no one would listen and it wouldn’t change a thing.
But life is good…and always has been.