Tuesday, August 5, 2014


I pride myself for having memories of my past and the stories I have heard. I believe they are important to me, my children, and their children. You are what you come from. Knowing what you come from helps you to know yourself.

That being said I must tell about a part of my memory that is missing.

We lived for most of the summer and part of the school year in a small town. We lived in a big old house on the corner. We played a lot of hide and seek. I cut my arm and needed stitches because of hide and seek. My brother cut his leg and needed stitches while he was messing around the pile where my mother burned the trash.

We made a play house in the alley. There was a funeral home across the alley. They had set one of those big cement vaults in the alley for some reason. We painted it and fixed it all up so we could play in it. The funeral director thought it was cute and left it to us.

I used to walk up to the school I would be attending in the fall. I would stand right up next to the wall of the building and look up at the top. It made me dizzy.

The school had one of those old fire escape chutes on the outside. They are not allowed to use those any more. We would climb up as high as we could and then slide down. It was better than a slide at the park.

I remember all those things. I remember our house.

But I have no memory of going to school there. Absolutely none. Nothing.

I do not remember going into the building. I do not remember going home at the end of the day. I do not remember being inside the building. I do not remember walking in the halls. I do not remember my classroom. Nothing.

Now I remember all my teachers. I may not remember all the names immediately but I remember them.

I do not remember my teacher at that school. I was in the second grade so I am certain it must have been a woman. Beyond that I know nothing.

Why don't I remember? I do not remember.

Actually this is something that has puzzled me ever since I realized that I had no memory of going to school there. It is not like me to have a total blank about something but there is nothing there.

Sometimes when I think very hard about it and try to remember it seems as if a shadow of a memory races just out of sight. But I cannot be sure. It could be wishful thinking. If it is there it is not long enough to even leave an impression of what might be.

So you will never hear about any of the things I did in that school. No funny comments about class. No trouble I got into with classmates. No foibles of my teacher. Sorry.


  1. Dear Emma,
    I found yor blog via Geo., where you said something kind about my choice of music, thank you! I will follow your blog - my blog on nature, the garden blog, is a bit neglected at the moment (changing from a garden in Hildesheim to a balcony in Berlin). Maybe you like the others. .
    As to memories: if there is a total blank: maybe the time you spent there was too short to remember, you being attentive to adjust to the new surroundings?

    1. If you ever get the opportunity, Brigitta, to read some of my older posts you will find that my family moved a lot when i was a child. That was not the only school that I spent a short time. It remains a puzzle to me that I remember absolutely nothing about the school yet I remember our house and activities so well.

  2. This was very enlightening, Emma, because I have the same problem not only with school memories, but also of many childhood ones. My brother, who is 3 years younger says he can recall many childhood incidents that I have no memory of whatsoever. Sadly, I seem to recall some negative comments from my mother especially in a couple of situations. And, I have often wondered if whether negativativity caused memory blockage. I have seen early photos of myself and it appeared that I had some happy times, but cannot recall them in any detail.

    1. My mother was a very loving person and I had a good relationship with her all my life. But she and my father (as do I) believed in discipline for us kids so there were times we were punished. But I do not remember any real negativity from either of them. I feel pain that you do not have those happy memories.

  3. I don't know about anyone else but if I have unpleasant memories, it is as if I have erased them from my mind. I still do that today. Sometimes, the mind tries its best to protect us, I think.

    1. I have misplaced bad memories before. They seem to return at a time I am able to deal with them. Perhaps something happened that is too horrible to deal with even after all these years? I don't know.