My First Memory

I could feel the grit of sand beneath my toes, the heat pushing down on my head and the icy tickle of the incoming tide.

I could hear the roar of the surf and the gentle buzz of adult conversation.

I could smell the salt and tang of ocean.

6977659104Perhaps my mind has simply filled in those details, like an artist shading and highlighting to give the picture more depth. What I DO know is that as I stood at the edge of the ocean, an enormous wave knocked me down and dragged me under the water.

shock

cold

choke

terror

Until my Dad reached down, pulled me out of the water and held me tight in his arms.

safe

It was a split second in time, so heavy with sensation and emotion that it imprinted permanently on my young mind.

It’s easy to overlook children’s earliest experiences, especially when they are too young to form lasting memories. But those first three years shape our understanding of ourselves and the entire world. In a way, those traumas and triumphs, however small, are the most important memories of all. Even if we can’t quite recall them. Even if they are hazy or incomplete. Even if they are only a feeling. They become the scripts in our psyche – how we interpret events, what we expect from life and, ultimately, who we are.

At a very young age I learned that the world can be a scary place.

That waves are stronger than me.

And my Dad is stronger than the waves.

safe

So here’s me, at age 2. I am convinced that this memory, and countless others like it, are the foundation if my confidence, resiliency, intimacy, trust… and faith. A good reminder that the endless menial tasks of parenthood – keeping babies safe, fed, warm and comforted – have lifelong effects.

Advertisements

About So Here's Us.... life on the raggedy edge.

I'm a bookworm, nature lover, kick-boxer, candy fiend, sci fi geek, home body, progressive Christian and part-time student. I love my crazy life and the messy, fun, stubborn, silly, brilliant people who populate it. View all posts by So Here's Us.... life on the raggedy edge.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: