First Memory

What is your first memory? I think most people have a happy memory or a significant memory that leaves a mark in their minds. Often I have deep conversations with people and we always touch on things that have happened in the past. We end up talking about childhood memories and eventually, we try to see what our earliest memory was. To me, I tell people that I was about four and my family was at a park watching a baseball game. I remember sitting on a blanket with my mom nearby. I heard the crack of the ball on the bat and heard everyone cheering. I can vividly remember a baseball flying toward me and hitting me in the face. Then everything went black. I remember everyone nearby crowded around me when I woke up and the first thing I saw was the trees as I was flat on my back after the hit. This was my first memory for a very long time. I wish it still was. The brain is a marvelous thing. I know my coping mechanism is to forget the things that had happened to me in the past in order to continue on with my life. I appreciate my brain for protecting me but I am also terrified of it. I am constantly in fear of what I will remember and what is going to trigger a memory from the deep dark parts of my mind where my brain hides the terrible memories. This leads to my actual first memory. It was triggered by a completely innocuous task. I was bathing one of my kids. It was right after I purchased my first home. The bathroom with the tub where I bathed my kids had beautiful white tiles. It was painted all white and I loved that bathroom. One evening, it was cold and I was bathing my kid, like I did every night. Since it was cold this night, it was the first chill of the season, I shut the bathroom door so my little one would not get cold. My baby was about 3 at this time. After the bath, I put a towel on the toilet so I could elevate my child as I put lotion on their tiny body. I get bad back pain and was hoping not to aggravate it. The bathroom got very steamy after the bath and it was hot and moist. I have always used white towels for my kids, it's a custom that I have continued because my mother used white towels for little kids too. I picked up my kid from the bathtub and placed them on the toilet on top of the towel. I started to rub lotion all over their body. That's when it happened. Like a flashback from a movie, my memory replayed an instance from my childhood. I was the same age as my kid. Kids that age all look the same, same body. Shapeless and genderless in my opinion. I was standing on the toilet on top of a white towel. There were white tiles on the floor but they were smaller than the ones in my bathroom. The bathroom was painted white and I knew exactly what building and apartment from my childhood I was in. The smell in the air was hot and steamy mixed with the scent of the lotion my mom used on me and my siblings. The same one that I use for my kids. Then I saw him. It was my father. He was standing next to me holding my arm and putting lotion on my little body. Then I remember him using that same lotion and placing it on his genitals. He then used himself to apply lotion to my own genitals. I remember him struggling to get a good angle. I also remember my 3-year-old self raising my leg to assist. That's when he smiled the biggest smile I could remember ever seeing on him. I remember that I smiled too. Even as I type this I can distinctly remember what it felt like when he was rubbing himself on me. It makes me sick. Eventually, I come back to my bathroom. There is vomit all over the floor and I am dazed and have tears streaming down my face. My baby is saying, "Mommy OK?" looking very concerned. I compose myself quickly when I saw the look on their face. I felt awful that they witnessed that and hoped that they would not remember it. I say that mommy has a tummy ache and take a spare towel to cover the vomit. I quickly dress my baby and get them out of the bathroom and into bed. I tossed everything away in the trash and clean up the bathroom still in utter disbelief at what I had just remembered. I was disgusted with the memory and with myself for letting it happen. Kudos to my brain though, because I truly feel that if those circumstances had not happened in that order with all those similarities, I would have not ever remembered it. I will never forget it again.


8/4/20231 min read

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