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Old 01-03-2010, 12:03 AM   #21
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First memory was about age 3-1/2, very meaningful and revised over the years. Also remember being in a crib-style bed with sidebars, put to bed when it was still light.

Age 5, I hated Kindergarten nap time, watched the teacher pace around, and could still pick her shoes out of a lineup, they were way out of style even then, looked like this, only less pretty and all black, no alligator patterns for her.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:16 AM   #22
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I was in my first year of kindergarten. I must have been 4 my little brother went 3 years starting at 3. We all went because our older brother was 5 and mom was teaching.

I remember my best friend's grandmother had a tv and I saw it, I had never seen one before and was impressed, she must have been rich. I remember little from that time, learning to ride a bike and the swing set dad built us. My brother broke my cheek with the monkey bar. I remember the doctor putting his fingers in my mouth and how much it hurt, but I didn't cry. I remember twin beds in my brothers' room mom would force us to take naps. We had to lay still and not talk or we were punished she stood between the beds until we were asleep.

I remember my mom almost dying on Halloween she swallowed a jaw breaker. Dad was out to town and us kids were still young. She ran out in the yard and my best friend's mom came over and pound on her until she could breathe. After that if we got jaw breakers she would put them in a towel and hit them with a hammer before we could have them.

I can't remember anything before I was 4.
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Old 01-03-2010, 07:01 AM   #23
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Same here about the teachers and kids. Flashes of stuff.

Your earliest memory I heard in some psych. class years ago is supposedly a good indication of your future life or philosophy. For instance, Marilyn Monroe's earliest memory was swinging on some swings with little boys standing around, and she had no panties on. My earliest memory wasn't that exciting--ha!
Oh great My first memory is of a hurricane when I was one. I remember roosters chasing me when I was two or three and a dog that died when I was three. I was in England when I was five and remember my cousins three wheeled car and my Aunts Holly bush beside the back door and several other things. Just realized I also remember all my grade school teachers.
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Old 01-03-2010, 08:13 AM   #24
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I have a few fragmentary memories before kindergarten and remember my first day at kindergarten because I was late and went to the wrong room and had to switch an hour later (there were two classes in my school). I actually remember more teachers from elementary school than high school.
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Old 01-03-2010, 08:29 AM   #25
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My earliest memories are also linked to kindergarten, actually to pre-kindergarten. I remember a lot of fuss when I blew the whistle to my buds that the Santa who showed up at our school Christmas party was actually Buddy Fink, the old guy who lived across the street from me.
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:46 AM   #26
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This thread made me take a peek at the few pics I have when I was a child. I ran across this one...seems like I remember sucking my pacifier that day....
I knew it! bbamI has been wearing boots for a LOOOONNNG time!
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Old 01-03-2010, 09:58 AM   #27
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I am so surprised at how many people report having no memories, or only fragmentary memories of their early lives. How unsettling it must be to not have continuous early memories. Imagine not being able to remember anything in your 20's, or just remembering one or two things from that decade. It would seem like part of your life had been stolen from you. I would feel the same if I did not have continuous memories of my toddlerhood and babyhood. Not that those were such great times, or that these memories were so significant, but they were part of my life just as much as any other part of my life.

I even remember more from Berkeley in the 1960's than some can remember from their pre-school days.
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Old 01-03-2010, 10:17 AM   #28
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My earliest memory is probably age 4 or 5. I decided I wanted to help my Mom around the house so I cleaned the bathroom for her. I expected her to be so happy, but much to my surprise she yelled at me because I didn't wear gloves when cleaning the toilet....must be why I still hate cleaning the bathroom to this day!
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Old 01-03-2010, 11:20 AM   #29
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I might have given the wrong impression when I said that I do not remember the names of my teachers in elementary or high school. No, I do not remember details like that. But I also do not remember the phone numbers of my family members. I know my own phone number because I have had it for 20 years.

But I do have somewhat continuous memories of my life since I was about 5. I had a fairly good childhood. In an earlier post, I bragged about reading the excellent The Spy Who Came in from the Cold, not really understanding it, but recalled the sad ending at the Berlin Wall when I reread it years later in adulthood. I first read it when I was about 7.

I am amazed that people can remember when they were 3 or younger; I couldn't remember a thing before 4. For example, I knew we lived in a different house when I was younger than 4, and perhaps my parents moved when I was around 3. Yet, I did not remember a thing about the previous house. Note the past tense. I remember that I was not able to recall memories of the previous home, when told about it at the age of less than 10. There were no photos to jog my memories, but if there were I suspect it would not help either.
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Old 01-03-2010, 12:30 PM   #30
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It was dark, and I was floating inside this big kind of water balloon thing...
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Old 01-03-2010, 01:01 PM   #31
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I had ear issues and had to get tubes a few times. I must have been 3 or 4 year old but my mom took me to get the tubes that morning (she worked nights) and a nurse came in and gave me a cup of stuff to drink to make me sleepy. After I drank it I sat down in the chair and my mom sat down in the hospital bed.
The doctor came in 20 minutes later to take me up stairs to get my tubes put in and my mom my sleeping and I was wide awake. I remember there being a big discussion with the nurse and doctor then getting a shot and everything went dark.

I remember some of the strangest stuff. Stuff like faces and names are hard for me to remember.
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Old 01-03-2010, 04:56 PM   #32
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I knew it! bbamI has been wearing boots for a LOOOONNNG time!
But of course...I insisted on baby booties!
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Old 01-03-2010, 05:27 PM   #33
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I remember being disappointed one Christmas as I didn't get the particular type of old western pistol I had asked Santa for. Probably age 4 and I also remember the doc making house calls to give me shots for tonsillitis. You know that was a long time ago, in the 1950's. Ended up having the doc yanking them out when I was in the first grade. I also remember going back to school for the first time after that and my class mates welcoming me back like I was some kind of hero or something. Funny how you remember things like that.
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Old 01-03-2010, 05:51 PM   #34
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My earliest memories are also linked to kindergarten, actually to pre-kindergarten. I remember a lot of fuss when I blew the whistle to my buds that the Santa who showed up at our school Christmas party was actually Buddy Fink, the old guy who lived across the street from me.

It could have been worse . The guy who played Santa at our school was my Dad .
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Old 01-03-2010, 06:06 PM   #35
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Its interesting, I have a lot of memories before starting kindergarten @5 but they are not in any organized structure. I remember being on a ferry boat and I thought I was 2 but Mom says that trip was when I was 4. Lots of toys, games, being carried by my father. Not at 5 everything is pretty well recalled and systematic. Wonder if there is something about the structure of school or being about 5 that sets a time structure for memories.
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Old 01-03-2010, 06:17 PM   #36
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It's funny; I keep seeing everyone talk about kindergarten. I certainly know what it is, but I don't think kindergarten was available in my town when I was a little girl. I started the first grade in August of 1963 at the age of 5 and turned 6 that November.

Now I think kids go to 'school' two years before they start the first grade. Bless their hearts.
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Old 01-03-2010, 06:23 PM   #37
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I did a half-day kindergarten in the public school down the block and across the street.

I went to grades 1 - 7 in the Catholic school 4 blocks the other way.

I think half-day was the norm for those who went.

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Old 01-03-2010, 06:28 PM   #38
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My dad died when I was 18 months. I don't remember him at all, but I have many memories stored away from before I was 5. Now, if those things happened when I was 2,3,4 or 5, I don't really know. I remember living in a very small town (200 pop.) and my dad's dog. I remember an old man across the alley locking me in his wood shed to scar the heck out of me. I remember scaring my mother by running off with a neighbor kid and playing in the community church, with no one knowing where we were. I remember going to town on Saturday nights during the hot summers and watching out door movies on the community movie screen. All kinds of memories.

What I have trouble remembering is when my daughter was in grade school. My husband worked at night during some of those years and I can't remember what my daughter and I did after work/school during that time. My mind is a complete blank. Daughter would remember tho.
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Old 01-03-2010, 06:32 PM   #39
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It could have been worse . The guy who played Santa at our school was my Dad .
I thought there is a law against that kind of cruelty to children.

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Wonder if there is something about the structure of school or being about 5 that sets a time structure for memories.
It might be simply that 5 is the age when a typical child can retain some coherent memory from day to day, in order to learn the basic alphabet and counting. My daughter was a fast learner. She could count and recite part of the alphabet when she was more than 3, or perhaps closer to 4, if I remember correctly. She was running and talking at her 1st birthday!

Now, for people who said they could remember back to a very young age, do you really remember learning to say "Pa" and "Ma"? Maybe that's pushing it. I certainly do not remember when I started to learn the alphabet.
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Old 01-03-2010, 07:09 PM   #40
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I remember when reading 'clicked' - and that was before school.

I think a lot of early memories are a matter of how impressed you were, and if you were asked 'do you remember xxx?" when younger, that might keep the memories towards the top of the pile, or if you saw pictures when younger and thought "Oh, yeah, that was when ..."

Add in individual variation - I have a very strong memory for some things, but not names - still am not great with them ...

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