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Life - A Memory Maker

Updated on September 23, 2015

My First Day of School

Making Memories

A friend once consoled me when I was angry by saying, "Just remember you're making memories!" There is no qualification here for good or bad, just memories.

We begin making memories at birth, some we remember, some we don't. It isn't a voluntary action, most of the time. We don't stop and think, "okay, I'm making a memory now", it just happens. Like your first memory of something in your childhood. Take for instance your first day of school. You didn't plan to remember it, but you did. It may or may not be a pleasant memory, but all the same it's a memory. I remember getting to wear a uniform like the big kids. I was going to school! I was excited and happy. Do I remember anything else about that day? Not really, but it was a happy memory. I'm sure there are a lot of people who don't remember it as a pleasant day, maybe they didn't like leaving their mother or they didn't like their teacher, either way, it's a memory.

The popular image of memory is as a kind of tiny filing cabinet full of individual memory folders in which information is stored away, or perhaps as a neural super-computer of huge capacity and speed.

— Luke Mastin

What is Memory?

So what is memory? It is remembering life's experiences. Whether we call it a filing cabinet or a super computer, it is a place where things from our past are stored. Sometimes happy things, sometimes sad.

We have long term memory where we remember things that happened long ago, and short time memory where we remember what happened yesterday. As we get older we often have difficulty with short term memory, like where we put the keys, but our long term memory remains in tact.

Scientists still aren't sure exactly how the memory works, but everyone knows it does. Your memory includes visual, auditory, and sensory components such as smell and feel, all compiled to make that special memory. You can't, and don't remember everything, but when you are paying attention, even subconsciously, you remember.

The Internet has given us a chance to unload some unnecessary memories. We don't have to remember things we know we can look up on the Internet. That must surely free up our memory for things like the date of our anniversary!

Gunsmoke - Marshall Dillon


What Do You Remember?

It's fairly obvious women remember different things than men do. While both may remember their wedding day, it's the women who remember the details of the day. On the other hand, how to fix the car is usually something remembered better by a man than a woman. We tend to remember things that interest us easier than things that don't and most women aren't interested in the motor of a car.

Do you remember your ABC's? I don't know too many people who've forgotten them. You learned them at an early age, but the memory of them has been reinforced throughout your life. You remember how to read and write, but do you remember where you put the book you were reading? Fortunately you most likely remember what book it was so locating it becomes easier with the memory of the title.

Do you remember games you played as a kid? Getting a group of friends together and setting up the rules of the game then playing for hours. Laughing and running while being with your friends, hour after hour? Think back....tag, hide 'n seek, or other such games. Johnny was the fastest and Betty the best "hider". When you stop and think about it, these childhood memories come back.

Do you remember that old man who lived on your block? You know, the one all the kids were afraid of. You went to get your ball out of his yard that day and he turned out to just be lonely. The two of you talked and he wasn't so bad after all. You became the only kid who wasn't afraid of him.

How about the birth of your first child? Obviously husband and wife have different memories of that day as it was experienced differently by both. I have to tell you, my first child is now forty-eight years old. When I went into labor, almost three months early, the doctor sent me to the hospital and they gave me medication to stop my labor. Not so bad right? Well, here's where it gets different. I was put in a room by myself. No TV, no radio, no companionship. The only thing in the room was the metal bed and the door to a bathroom I was not allowed to use. I had to stay in bed. I remember holding on to the metal spokes on the back of the bed when the pain came. It was scary and there was no one to actually tell me what was going on. In the meantime, my husband was sitting in the waiting room, waiting. Finally they told him to go home and get some rest. He drove home and when he got there the hospital called and said come back you're baby is being born. Now don't you think our memories of that day are a bit different? A day we both experienced, but certainly from different viewpoints and physical experiences.

What do you remember when you smell an apple pie baking? Did your grandmother bake the best apple pies with the smell filling the house? What about that special television show you watched with your father every Saturday night? Mine was Gunsmoke on Saturday and Bonanza on Sunday!

Loved ones and their special friends


Mixed Memories

Of course some of our memories aren't good ones. That trip to the hospital to get stitches after the baseball hit you in the head, or when you fell off the swing set and broke your arm. Fights between family members that scared you and made you sad.

How about the time your car skidded on ice and hit that tree? You can remember that like yesterday. That helpless feeling when the car was out of your control with fear filling your belly as you waited for the car to stop and prayed you'd be in one piece when it did.

There are some bad memories that make you laugh though. I remember my husband playing soccer with our son and his friends, with no shoes on. He kicked the ball the same time another boy did and lost a toe nail in the process. It bled for a while and he yelled for a while. The boy who kicked the same time he did was petrified. To this day he remembers kicking my husband's toe nail off! Unfortunately for my husband, we all thought it was pretty funny and get a good chuckle each time we recall the story.

Watching your first born go off to college is a memory with mixed emotions. You're so proud of his accomplishments, but seeing him leave home makes you sad at the same time. You worry about what is going to happen to him and how he'll make out without you. Those feelings stay with you for a very long time, even after he's graduated from college, got a job, and is out on his own. That initial fear and apprehension is certainly memorable and something you don't forget.

Life gives us memories whether we want them or not. Your first date or your first break up. Your wedding or in some sad cases your divorce. Your first apartment or your first house. When your first car met its demise.

Remembering when you got your mother that special gift she loved, and the curlers she always put in her hair! The list goes on and on.

The good thing about memories is you're always making new ones.

Tillsontitan - All Rights Reserved

How good is your memory?

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    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Well, if that isn't one of the nicest things yet! Just stopping by to say hi.

      Hope all is well with you and you are doing great. I know dieting is difficult but you're doing so well. Hugs GF.

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      3 years ago from sunny Florida

      Just stopping by to say hey. I read this before but rereading it makes it even that much more special for sure.

      Hoping all is well with you this afternoon.

      Angels once again are heading your way ps

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Paul, I have tried to edit my comment several times to add my thoughts to you, but for some reason it wouldn't work.

      You have made some very good, though sad points. Our memories certainly live on with us and make us who we are today. Thank you for sharing.

      GF, I had added that our memories keep our loved ones alive in our thoughts and life, but my edit didn't take.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      What's really nice GF is now, I have you to add to my memories! Thank your for your lovely, thoughtful comment and for being a friend.

    • fpherj48 profile image


      3 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Tillie......Some of my favorite moments are spent "remembering." I can sit in silence for hours, playing out scenarios of the past. Yes, some are long forgotten, but it seems the ones that truly matter are locked in our hearts forever. These are gifts we treasure and best of all, cannot be stolen from us. Our memories remain our private collection of how we came to who and where we are today. How fabulous.

      I thoroughly enjoyed this work of art, GF. Thank you for sharing your wonderful memories with us. Sending you hugs, Paula

    • Paul Kuehn profile image

      Paul Richard Kuehn 

      3 years ago from Udorn City, Thailand

      Mary, after reading this awesome hub, I really feel for people who develop Alzheimers and lose their memories. If my memories weren't fairly good, it would be very difficult writing a lot of my personal memoirs. I only regret not taking more pictures and having a diary when I was younger. I am sharing this with HP followers and on Facebook.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Ah, thinking is a good thing Deb.

      Shy, love your saying! One we should remember.

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 

      3 years ago from Texas

      Dear Mary, it is not so important to remember as it is to remember the important.

      Love your pictures.

      Blessings and hugs

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 

      3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Now you're making me think...

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Thanks Larry for adding to my memories!

    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      3 years ago from Oklahoma

      Memories are what make us us. Great read.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      DDE it is amazing how many memories we store and what triggers them to return.

      drbj, I can't imagine a life devoid of memories! They help to form who we are and certainly influence our actions.

      PS, thank you, not only for the great comment, but for sharing my hub.

      Sha, I chuckled when I read your comment because my mother used to tell me I had a selective memory. Yes, our memories are certainly important to our lives. Hmm, I think I smell a new hub coming....

      I'm so happy I brightened your day Audrey! The good memories are always there for us to bring back when we need them. Have a great weekend.

    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 

      3 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      I love memory stories and have written a few. It is fun to recall the important events in our lives, and these brought back first day of school, wedding, birth, and made my brain think back on all these important days. You wrote a hub to make us reminisce, Mary, and brightened my day. You should be proud. Sharing, Blessings, Audrey

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      3 years ago from Central Florida

      Great hub, Mary. I found it interesting that left-handed people have better memories. I don't know what research came up with that. I'm right-handed and have a pretty darn good memory.

      My mother has told me that I have a selective memory. Things I don't want to claim kin to simply do not exist in my memory banks. I'm not sure how true that is, as I do remember some episodes in my life I wish I could forget. I think maybe we retain memories of bad things that have happened to us as a way of helping us steer clear of like situations in the future - or at least how to recognize the possible danger, allowing us to consciously circumvent an unpleasant result.

      Hmmm. You've got me thinking....

    • pstraubie48 profile image

      Patricia Scott 

      3 years ago from sunny Florida many memories rushed back with each new 'scene' you conjured up. And yes, we can experience the same event as another but how we remember it is colored by our perspective.

      This was a great read from beginning to end.

      Shared g+ tweeted pinned

      Angels are headed your way this evneing ps

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 

      3 years ago from south Florida

      What an enjoyable trip this was! Thank you, Mary. Our lives are made from memories and it is always fascinating for me to hear a bit of a song, or a phrase someone uses, or a scent that takes me back - way back - to a usually marvelous memory. Hard to imagine what we would be like without that special skill.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      3 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Life is precious and filled with all the memories. Going back down memory lane is such a wonderful moment. It is amazing how the memories come back to you when you are in old places.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Yes Vellur, we can choose which memories we want to think about and certainly the happy ones warm our hearts. Unfortunately, the bad ones are part of our lives and we can't forget them, but we can put them away. So happy you enjoyed my hub.

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 

      3 years ago from Dubai

      We are always making memories, and that is a great thing. The best thing about memories is that we can relive the happy ones again and again. The bad memories we can choose to forget, but it is very difficult. Enjoyed reading your hub, great write.

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Thanks for sharing the great quote! I'll remember you and your comments for a long time as well!

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 

      3 years ago from Shelton

      Til, I think memories, bad or good are the very fabric of life... someone said, and I forget who,( If moments are fleeting, memories are permanent. ) a very interesting hub my dear friend... and I'll remember it for sometime Frank...

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      So true Homeplace, unexpected memories respond to unexpected triggers! Happy to bring back memories.

    • Homeplace Series profile image

      William Leverne Smith 

      3 years ago from Hollister, MO

      Excellent hub, Mary. Thank you so much for sharing it. I am most fascinated that all those memories are in storage. A trigger to recall one can come at the most unexpected moments... but they are all there. Thanks, for the memories!! ;-)

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Ann, it is funny the things we remember, and the things that invoke our memories. Of course our memories sometimes differ with those who share them, but its all in the memory! Glad you enjoyed.

    • annart profile image

      Ann Carr 

      3 years ago from SW England

      I love going through memories, usually with photos because they are such a great reminder. However, so many memories are evoked by music, smells and someone's detail that brings back your own details (not always ones that concur!). I love that when it happens.

      My first memory is of being in a pram and being pushed down towards our then front door, passing underneath a tree which gave dappled shade from the sun. I must have been less than 2 so I'm quite surprised at that one!

      Just by sharing this great hub with us, you've taken us down memory lane, Mary! Thank you.


    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Thank you Faith. We want to remember so many things and at times, can't for the life of us. As you said, other times a trigger brings that memory back.

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      3 years ago from southern USA

      Ah, yes, our brains are amazing to me to remember what they do and then go blank at times as we get a bit older for sure. I am always amazed that I can't remember a single lyric to a song, but then when my brain hears that first note, all of the lyrics come back to me; so odd!

      I love your first day of school photo and thank you for sharing. I believe the quote by Maya is true that we remember how someone made us feel.

      Wonderful hub, Mary.

      Blessings always

    • tillsontitan profile imageAUTHOR

      Mary Craig 

      3 years ago from New York

      Yes Maria, song lyrics seem to stick in our memory I think because they bring back happy times. It's true our memories aren't always accurate, but they are ours ;) Don't you just love my neck tie?

      Bill so glad I could set your mind straight ;) Every now and then it helps to stop and think about the things we remember, but then you already know that, and yes, we're always making memories.

      Mike, glad you liked my first day of school pic. The thing that irritates me is when I can't remember that actor or actresses name! Yes, losing one's memories is truly sad.

      You are right Paintdrips, we have too many good things to remember so no sense remembering those we don't need.

      Thank you swalia.

      Manatita, I too hit that tree and it was a horrifying experience, not one you soon forget. So glad you enjoyed my little ramble about memory.

      Thank you whonu, your comment is an added gem here.

      Thank you panshe.

    • profile image

      panshe katsuwah 

      3 years ago

      nice work buddy

    • whonunuwho profile image


      3 years ago from United States

      Our memories serve as a treasure box where is locked away precious gold from days past...and yes, we are continually adding to the riches there. Nice work my friend. whonu

    • manatita44 profile image


      3 years ago from london

      Very creative here, Mary, or let's say very original. Great memories. I share the movie with you and the skidding car hitting a tree at full speed! I was pretty shocked!

      I write about Grenada's most powerful hurricane in 1955. I was three years old, but don't remember it. Ah!

      A well-written Hub and an enjoyable one. Thanks for the memories!

    • swalia profile image

      Shaloo Walia 

      3 years ago from India

      interesting hub!

    • PAINTDRIPS profile image

      Denise McGill 

      3 years ago from Fresno CA

      I figure that things I know how to look up aren't necessary to memorize. So I never pay attention to directions to get somewhere. I can always look that up again if I need to. But other things worthy of my mental space I keep in special places.


    • mckbirdbks profile image


      3 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

      Hello Mary. I liked your take on memory and also those you shared with us. As we get a little older our memories are not as reliable. I have watched many a movie concentrating only on the name of that actor/actress. I am not 'device happy' so I do not carry the internet in my handy iphone.

      I do know that talking with people whose memory has retreated is an unpleasant experience.

      That is a nice first day of school photo.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      3 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well, as I learned on Jeopardy last night, I don't remember everything, but I still remember the important stuff. I love the opening sentiment...remember, you're making memories. I loved this hub, Mary. Great way to set my mind straight this Wednesday.

    • marcoujor profile image

      Maria Jordan 

      3 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Dear Mary,

      I enjoyed reading your take on memories, especially the personal examples you've strewn throughout.

      I have little problem remembering song lyrics from way back. Like you, I'm grateful for the internet to remind me of so much more in the recesses of my brain.

      And I'm forever amazed at our ability to remember life events so differently from our perspective.

      I love your pic as a little lady-sweet!


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