Wednesday, February 14, 2018

The Mom Who Wasn't, and Other Memories

Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory

Memories are strange things. Why do some stand out, even after decades? Memories of trauma,(or happiness)  it makes sense to remember,  but memories that don't seem to have anything painful attached that remain burned into the mind - - that seems odd.

Two memories stay with me, more than fifty years later. The first is traumatic, because I remember the emotional pain as well as the intense confusion. The second memory doesn't carry anything unusual, yet the image remains.

I'm in pre-school, maybe kindergarten. Page School in Los Angeles. It's time to go home, and for some reason, I'm in the bathroom. White tiles, stalls, windows high up on the walls. I'm not allowed to leave the bathroom -- don't know why -- and I see my mother standing in the doorway. She's wearing a sleeveless plaid dress, and white framed sunglasses. Just standing there. Something about a pool as well. I'm crying and screaming my head off, because I want to go to her. A couple of teachers are telling me she's not my mom. I don't understand this at all. This woman, who is silent, standing there, with her huge wrap around dark sunglasses in white frames, is my mother! She's wearing the same dress, has the same hair color and style, same sunglasses. I'm hysterical and can't stop screaming and crying.
After all this goes on, I'm outside (again, by a pool, but I don't know if this is true thing or a weird 'mis-memory.') My "real" mom shows up. Same dress, glasses, hair, and she is happy to see me of course. I don't understand why she doesn't mention what happened just a few minutes ago. Why she doesn't mention my crying, or her in the doorway, seemingly uncaring and oblivious.
The second memory is one I've written about before.

I'm about the same age as the first memory. No older than five. Walking with my grandmother (mother's mother) in a large room, white tiles, glass brick windows or walls, glass cases, and clocks. Clocks everywhere. Where is this place, what is this place?

That's all I remember. Why does this postcard image stand out in my mind?

Neither of these memories have anything to do with UFOs, the astral, or supernatural. But they are strange, in their persistence.

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