Memories - they shape who we are and how we see the world.
Our memories of childhood can make us laugh or bring us to tears. Good or bad, memories are precious. They shape who we are and how we see the world.
A few years back my childhood town held its annual "Good Old Days" reunion. This was my first time attending - oh, the memories it brought back. I saw faces I had not seen in years, and friends from my old neighborhood. I saw a childhood buddy, her face had not changed, just gotten older and wiser. We last played together when we were about 10 years old. We relived sweet girlish memories. While at the reunion we promised to keep in touch, we would hate to lose one another again. We have. A promise broken. An old friend lost. Some memories are so painful that we prefer not to spend much time in these spaces but they are also a part of us. They too have helped us to become who we are. We all remember the class bully, or the relative who drank too much or could not keep a job. We promised ourselves that we would not be like that. This was not the kind of person whom we would purposely choose as a friend or one whom we would emulate.
Past influences are always present. I am forever grateful to one of my teachers. She helped me to understand that a black child's love for books and theatre was absolutely legitimate. Until that time I had only shared my secret passions with my mother.
Memories come from milestones in our lives, but they are also scents, tastes and our first best friend. They are special hiding places, they are the birth of a sibling or the death of a parent. They are going to a different school and leaving your friend behind. They are colors, textures and fears. I have found that memories and experiences often reflect in a person's attitude, personality, and expectation of life. September 11, 2001 has made all of us very much aware of how truly precious life is and how quickly it can be taken away from us. Take some time to think about the good memories and the people who have had a positive affect on your life. Then call them, send them a note, or an e-mail just to say I am thinking of you. If the person has passed on - say a prayer of thanks for being in your life.