My first memory ever… perhaps it was the day I lost a tooth on my way to school while eating a meat pie, or it was when I was taking the entrance exam to kindergarten/nursery. Or it was the day I was peeking into my baby brother’s cot.
Memory is such a fickle thing. It can be altered or erased and sometimes, outright misleading. It can make you ex seem like a wonderful person or your mother the worst person on earth. Yet, for such fickle things, we depend on them immensely. We depend on our memories of stuff to make a lot of decisions. The foods we like, the people we hang with and the ones we forever avoid… we depend on our memories of so many things.
Then we pass on these memories to other people. We tell our stories the way we remember them, sometimes with a little more information than necessary. These stories are then passed on, and before long, they become truth. Other times, they are stories we tell ourselves one too many times that they become our truth.
Whenever I tell my story about how I jumped classes, it’s a lot different from the ones my mother tells.
I have ever jumped one grade in my life. I jumped from KG 1 to class one. The natural progression would have been two years in KG before primary school. However, I spent only one year. This is the true story.
I believe, however, that I was meant to skip two grades in pre-school. According to my memory, I was a brilliant child and the school felt like I needed to be skipped two grades, however, they thought it was too much for my young age so they didn’t. Then I got to kindergarten and I was absolutely killing it so they had no choice but to let me go and flourish.
That’s my version.
According to my mother, I was placed in the class I was meant to be placed in and there was no talk about me skipping a grade till kindergarten when I actually did skip to Class one.
My question is, if there was nothing of that sort, then whyyy in the world would I think there was huh? Somebody’s lying. And it definitely isn’t me. That’s for sure! Because I remember! I was there!
As I said, memory is such a fickle thing. My mother stands by her version, and I stand by mine. It would probably take an unbiased third person who was actually there to settle this once and for all. I have no idea where to find such a person, and honestly, it doesn’t bother me much. It’s a discrepancy I don’t mind living with, to be honest.
Now imagine if this was a serious matter where feelings are involved. Both parties holding on to feelings of hurt that are absolutely valid (per their memories or points of view). Crazy isn’t it. Sometimes, it’s not even something that can be resolved by an unbiased third party because there isn’t really one. And the scary part is, both parties might never know that their hurts are purely subjective, thereby ruining their relationship forever.
It’s a crazy world we live in. There’s no guarantee against hurt and disappointment. So instead of holding on to things that rid you of your peace and joy, try letting go, one act of love at a time. It might not be reciprocated all the time, but love anyway because for every person who doesn’t appreciate it, there’s a lot more people who do. Do it for them.
Dr Nyameba 💜