What Your Childhood Memories Say About You – I need a Tylenol

What Your Childhood Memories Say About You by Dr. Kevin Leman will lead you back to childhood to reflect on what you remember. Me? My first childhood memory is bathed in golden light. We were moving to a new house, I think. I was about three years old… although I might have been two or four, I don’t remember. All I know is that my mother and I had matching purses. I feel like grandma (Dad’s mom) made them for us but again, I’m not positive. I don’t remember what they looked like or what they were made out of, only that they existed. I was with my mother and the room yellow, ivory, gold… not necessary the paint… late afternoon, probably dappled sunshine on white walls, definitely warm. That’s it. The whole enchilada, if enchiladas were memories.

The rest of my childhood comes in snapshots… filled with senses and scents. The smell of the bathing cap as I pulled it over my head to swim in the Sander’s pool. My mother’s Arpege perfume as she and dad got ready to go out. Dad’s pancakes on the weekends, Bappa’s hugs, my sister’s tears… she was such a sensitive soul back then. Just moments upon moments.

Ah, childhood… “The key to everything,” according to Lemen. He says, “Tell me 2 to 3 childhood memories before age 8… and I’ll tell you everything about you. Guaranteed.”

Am I the only one that takes a step back from that statement and says, “Uh, say what?”

Oh, good. Didn’t think so.

I have no idea why this is… but… it kinda creeps me out. Huh. Interesting.

Leman is a prolific author (over 30 books) and I especially liked the his work on Birth Order. Being the first-born, I carried a lot of traits that first-born’s seem to…

I was certainly a bossy know-it-all. What’s this? I still am? Say it ain’t so!

One of things he said – and don’t quote me, I’m going from memory – is that first-borns don’t like surprises. It was then that a small doubt wiggled it’s way in. No, worse. I actually thought it was one of the dumbest things I’d ever heard. I don’t like surprises, sure, but it’s my anxiety. I need prep time and a Xanax if there’s gonna be surprises. My husband doesn’t like them either and he’s smack in the middle of his tribe of siblings (5 of ’em).  Anyhow, if you haven’t read the birth order book, never fear, it’s mentioned – like, 1,000,000 times – in this book, too.

As I was preparing to write, I noticed I’d underlined something and in fact, it’s the only thing I underlined in the whole book! That should make it important, right? Well, you tell me: Children might have problems with authority because they’ve seen the hypocrisy in those who are supposed to be modeling healthy, appropriate authority. Here’s the thing: I don’t have trouble with authority. Did I? I mean, as a kid? I trusted and respected teachers, police, parents, well, until they showed me otherwise (I’m looking at you, Mrs. Anderson, who slapped me across the face!). But I never lumped *every* teacher, police officer, or parent together. Why did I underline that? Why is it important? Just interesting, I think.

So, this book… it’s good, especially if you haven’t taken a look at your childhood lately, or perhaps I should say, ever.

But, let me be honest…

I originally picked up the book (years ago) because it looked interesting. I opened it and read something about how our current logic comes from childhood memories and it piqued my interest. I wanted to know more.

However, there’s just… something about this book I do not like! I feel strongly that it’s NOT the subject matter. I think it’s his “voice”… and I am really uncomfortable with it.

I’m not sure I’ve ever said this about a book I’ve written about. Sure, I don’t like some of them for all sorts of reasons… but this one? I just… can’t quite wrap my head around why I don’t like it.

The whole thing is just creeping me out now. I need a Tylenol.




  1. I remember those matching purses, Sherry, and, yes, Grandma Nelsen did make them for us. They were adorable – strips of cocoa material woven through a latticework frame with soft peach-colored flowers on the outside. As I recall, you were about three and a half at the time, and we were in the process of buying or moving into the house on Steffen St. I kept those purses for years afterwards, long after they’d started to disintegrate.

    Liked by 1 person

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