I have only fond memories of my childhood. I used to worry about what memories my children will grow up with, but now I’ve analysed the whole process a bit more I no longer worry. My parents weren’t deliberately making memories for us, they were just living their life and doing what they thought was best at the time. That’s all I can ask of myself too.
I now believe memories are not something we can consciously create, they are merely the byproduct of our daily life. You cannot manipulate them or change them, they just are what they are. And one person’s memory of something can be totally different from another’s, it depends on one’s perspective on life and how you choose to process it. It’s also important to have good memories and bad memories; that’s what moulds us into who we are as people. Memories are not necessarily the ‘big’ events in our lives, sometimes it is more of an impression that is gained over a long period of time.
Yes, my children lost their father and it has created a big hole in their lives, but they also have a lot of positive stuff surrounding them too. They have a safe and secure family life, great friends, a good home, good school, an awesome mother (just had to add that in there!) and they don’t have anything threatening or dangerous to deal with. Some children may not have lost a parent, but they have their own demons to fight and holes creating a void. Perhaps they are bullied, have an illness, come from a violent home or don’t have enough food. They may prefer to have my boys’ childhood than their own. We are all given separate lives for a reason — it’s our own experiences that count.
I hope my children look back on their childhood and have fond memories. If I have somehow contributed to that, I’ll be extremely pleased but won’t take all the credit.
Some of my childhood memories:
- Jumping out of a cold swimming pool and lying on the hot concrete.
- School lunch orders. Marmite and chip roll, pie, doughnut (best part of these was picking the little nobbly bits off the bottom!).
- “Down and across. Circle. Line with a dot on. Around the corner, around the corner”. That was what I’d say to myself when I was learning to write my name – Lois.
- Best hiding spot for hide and seek – top of the hot water cupboard or in the laundry basket.
- Church fairs – fudge in handmade cardboard cups, little plants in pots.
- Saturday afternoons watching rugby on TV with Dad.
- Milk delivered in bottles and paid for with tokens from the milkman.
- Mr Whippy cartons of icecream for 5ȼ.
- The three ‘r’s — reading, writing, ‘rithmetic. One of my mum’s sayings.
- Icebreaker chocolate from the dairy on a Saturday night to eat during the weekly movie on TV.
- ‘Jumping Jacks’ fireworks chasing you around on Guy Fawke’s night. Collecting all the ‘duds’ (failed crackers) next morning and breaking them open to use as ‘fizzers’.
- Making a swimming pool with my brother using tent poles and black polythene.
- Winning the “name a Popsicle” competition and receiving a bag of free Popsicles (Izzy Icicle).
- Black and white TV and having to thump the top of it when the picture would roll up and down!
What are your favourite childhood memories?