It is my first memory. Or at least one of my first. I am sitting in the kitchen. On Dad's lap at the head of the long, wood table. I have a yellow book flipped open in front of me. Dr. Suess's My Book About Me. I am three or four. I don't think I know how to read yet. So Dad reads me the questions. Questions about me. And he helps me fill in the answers.
How many stairs do you have in your home?
Some questions require that I hop up and investigate. I remember running to the stairs, walking up slowly, counting each one. I remember recording the number of stairs in the little blank space.
I remember being very happy. Feeling safe. Feeling surrounded by family at home. Feeling powerful and purposeful, recording tidbits about me. Me.
The details are hazy. They are. But the memory is there. Here. In my mind and in my heart. And this memory in particular? It makes me smile. Because there I was, a tiny thing, Toddler's age, sitting with Dad, embarking on something I love. Beginning to tell my story.
So much has changed. Here I am almost three decades later. In my own home with my own dining table and my own family. Here I am, ensconced in memory and longing, writing my own words. Continuing what I started so many years ago. My story about me.
And now. Now, I will sign off. And I will do it. I will buy three more of those glorious yellow books. For the two (and soon-to-be three) little girls in my world. And I can't wait. Until they sit there with me or with Daddy, flipping through the questions, asking, answering, counting, creating.
What is your first memory?