...The time my Momma's Oldsmobile was hit by that lady who ran the stop sign. It was 1983; I was three and seat belt laws didn't exist yet. I think car seats were optional for toddlers. I was in my car seat, with its brown padded bar that came down over my head to form a sort of tray in front of me - I loved to beat my hands on that, I still remember the way it felt and sounded - but the bar wasn't there that day. We weren't going far, so Momma had put me in the car seat, but I wasn't buckled or fastened in any way. I was just hangin' out. And then the car lurched and I somersaulted from my car seat in the back over the middle console and came to rest with my back to the dash and my legs over my head. I was confused - what just happened? - and I looked up and over at my Momma. Her forehead was full of blood; the windshield was cracked. I have fuzzy memories of an ambulance arriving to take Momma to the hospital, and Granny staying behind with me; I wasn't hurt, just confused.
...Running down the short hallway of our apartment to greet Daddy at the door when he came home from work. Many days, he was carrying a 40 oz. beer, usually a Budweiser. I'd beg for a sip and he'd give in - it was the nastiest taste ever, but Daddy liked it so I wanted some. I was 4.
...Wearing my Momma's bowling shoes and trying to imagine a day when I'd be able to lift that big heavy ball.
...The feeling of terror and incompetence that came over me the first time I walked into my 3rd grade classroom and saw a cursive alphabet circling the room. My Daddy was holding my hand, and I looked up at him and whispered, "Daddy, I don't think I can do this." "Yes you can," he whispered back. He was right.
...That time in 4th grade when we were saving cans to recycle to earn money for our class trip - we poured out bags and bags full of cans on the concrete basketball courts outside the school and had a can-crushing party. I'd worn sandals that day - cheap one made of white fake-leather laces - and a can I was trying to crush cut my instep deeply. I didn't tell anyone because the other kids made fun of me enough as it was, and I worried for days about the possibility of infection.
...That time in 5th grade when Wendy Wilson pushed me into a table while Ms. Dixon was out of the room. I was the class tattle-tale, and Wendy didn't care that I'd been left in charge as room monitor. I remember her pushing me, I remember falling into the table, I remember knocking things over with my flailing arms, I remember feeling embarrassed and wanting to cry but not quite daring to - but I can't remember if I told on her. I don't think I did.
(In response to RemembeRED - because I read Ixy's and Katie's and they're brilliant and they inspired me to remember.)