Musings

My Time in Prison Circa 2000

30 Day Writing Challenge – Day 14

What is your earliest memory?

I have a pretty good memory. Sometimes it freaks me out how I can remember the most obscure comments and insignificant details. I often think I can remember things that happened when I was a toddler. I know these memories are probably just stories people have told me or pictures I have seen, and that, psychologically, it is near impossible to remember things that happened that early in life. So, putting those possible false memories aside, I will try to conjure up one of my earliest memories.

When I was younger, I hated anyone that wasn’t in my immediate family. I didn’t even want people looking at me. Still don’t. But my parents had to work, and sometimes my grandparents were busy and couldn’t watch me. The high school had this free daycare once in a while, so my mom would drop me off there. And put my precious life in the hands of brooding teenagers.

I think my mom used to lie to me about where we were going, because I would always be happy to get in the car with her. But my habit of looking out of windows on car rides started early, and I would pick up on some things I saw during these rides. Every time I saw that seemingly innocent white picket fence in that yard, it signaled that disaster was right around the corner. That fence marked a few hours at daycare. It was about this point during the car ride I would start to beg my mom not to throw me to the childcare wolves. But I didn’t have a choice.

Daycare was basically a prison to me. The kids were all covered in snot, the toys were all sticky, the warden’s idea of a snack was graham crackers with peanut butter and raisins on top, and Mr. Potato Head, the only toy I was interested in playing with, was always taken by the time I got to daycare. Daycare was the last place I wanted to be.

In retrospect, I feel bad for putting up a fight with my mom. I’m sure she only put me in daycare when necessary, but I would have rather been left at home. Like I would call CPS… I couldn’t even reach the phone! However, the behavior I displayed as a child has proven to be a good indicator of how I act now. I still throw temper tantrums when faced with social situations. The only difference between my behavior then and now is I will fight a kid for a Mr. Potato Head.

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