Earliest Memories

I posted in the title page of this section that my earliest memory is of being in pre-school at Just Children in Trevose, PA. I plan now to elaborate more on the surrounding events of this memory, and probably rant some about that time in my life.

I was three years old, I remember that the three year old class was upstairs, the four and five year old classes were downstairs, and you had to walk through both of those rooms to get to the stairs, up to our room. I spent a lot of my time at that age in pre-school. My parents divorced before I can remember. I never knew them together at all. My mom would drop me off at the pre-school on her way to work, and pick me up on her way home most nights. Sometimes my grandmother would pick me up, since we did live with her and my grandfather.

My mom worked very hard at a job she couldn’t have possibly enjoyed, other than the socializing she got to do. She was responsible for inserting the microfiche of hospital and bank records into sleeves, sorting, stacking and filing away literally thousands of these things every day. It was 1988, and she was doing what she had to do in order to contribute, and make ends meet for her and I. There was many a night when I was the last child to leave pre-school, because she had to work late, or had something to do after work. I even remember several occassions when the pre-school threatened to not let me come back, because of how late I was being picked up.

I remember even then feeling, and being treated by the teachers, as somehow smarter, or more intellectual than the other kids. I vividly remember having a girlfriend when I was 4 years old, her name was Allison. Her dad was a race car driver that worked with my grandfater, and eventually ended up driving in the ARCA series. I remember getting in trouble because I would never take a nap, and sitting up listening to the adult’s conversations. They constantly had to report to my mom that I was beyond my years, and always trying to be an adult. I guess my earliest academic memory also came at that pre-school, when they were attempting to teach us to read.

It had to be kindergarten, only because I remember the room, and since it was in the front of the school, it was the kindergarten class. Teachers were using flash cards to teach us words, not knowing that I was already reading books to my mom at night when she would fall asleep attempting to read them to me. There were fun little games that tried to teach us the fundamentals of sounding out words, and as other kids struggled, and got upset because ‘ketchup’ was a complicated word, I easily breezed through all of the lessons. So much so that eventually, I was prohibited from joining in the word games, because I never let any of the other little kids win. This would become a recurring theme.

The last memory that I have of the pre-school, is probably when I left and was devastated that my girlfriend, the aforementioned Allison, was not going to the same school that I was. It was the first of my many experiences with real loss, and heartbreak. Looking back, it is good that I started early, and I am sure it has contributed to my ability to adapt and handle those situations so well 18 years later.


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