Memories, Like the Corners of my Mind


Like the corners of my mind

Misty water-colored memories….

It has been brought to my attention by my mom that my memories and some of the things that I recount here on my blog aren’t always factual when it comes to my childhood.

Remember when I said that my older sister gave me a home perm when I was a kid? Well, it was actually my mom that gave me the perm. My mom has finally figured out how to comment on WordPress so now if I get some facts wrong she will kindly set the record straight. Also, my aunt pointed out the other day that my Grandma didn’t eavesdrop too much on the party line. My dad may have exaggerated a bit that it was often.

The point that I’m trying to make is that everyone’s memory of a situation is different…especially when it comes to a kid’s memory.

Someday, I want my children to read this blog and see all the wonderful and not so wonderful memories of their life and their family’s history.

So today I am writing this post for my 5 year old son Bency.

When Bency was 3 years old he tackled his then 5 year old sister, Iris, on the recliner in the living room. She immediately began screaming, “Get off of me, you’re hurting me! Get him off of me…he’s hurting me!”

I was sitting on the couch adjacent to the scene and my husband was sitting at the computer desk next to them. After we both asked Bency to get off of his sister and he made no motion to discontinue his jumping on his sister, my husband reached over and pulled Bency off of her.

We heard a pop.

Both my husband and I looked at each other with wide eyes and then Bency let out a blood curdling scream.

Bency began holding his elbow and continued to scream at the top of his lungs. We instantly knew that something was seriously wrong so without a second thought we scooped him up and we all raced to the doctor’s office 5 minutes away.

Once inside the clinic, they immediately ushered us back to the examining room and the doctor came in within minutes as Bency laid in my lap still crying softly. He briefly felt Bency’s arm and elbow and then looked at me and said, “This will only take a second but hold him tight and expect a pop and a scream.” The doctor quickly pushed and turned and within seconds we heard the pop and Bency let out a yelp. Bency cried for a few more seconds and then we asked him if his arm still hurt. He thought about it for a moment and then answered, “no” and proceeded to hop off of my lap and start jumping around.

The doctor then explained that this is a common occurrence in children between the ages of 1-3 years old and is often called nursemaid’s elbow. It happens because the ligaments in that area haven’t fully developed at that age. You have to be extremely careful not to pull a child by their elbow. There is however no permanent damage done and it just pops back into place.

We breathed a sigh of relief and after spending a mere 15 minutes at the doctor’s office we left with a happy boy.

Over the last few years we have brought the story up occasionally because it was slightly horrific at the time. Also, Iris was 5 years old and remembers it quite vividly so she has told her brother that his elbow popped out of his socket. Bency, however , obviously doesn’t remember the situation at all.

The reason I believe this is because last summer Bency said, “Mom, do you remember the time my elbow popped out of my socket and blood started spewing all over? There was blood flying everywhere and my bones were poking out and you were trying to get my bones back into my body?”

I immediately sat Bency down and told him the whole story and assured him there was no blood involved and no bones were poking out of his body. I went over it a few times to make sure he fully understood. I was certain I had set the record straight.

A month ago at the dinner table Bency said, “Remember the time my elbow came out of my arm and all of my skin started melting off of me and all of my fingernails fell off? It was so terrible. The skin was literally just peeling off of me. And bones just started falling out of my body and blood was just dripping everywhere.”

I let out an exasperated sigh and once again found myself telling Bency the whole story all over again. Step by step. Every detail. I once again reiterated that there was no blood involved. No skin peeling or melting off. No bones protruding or falling out. Not one fingernail fell off.

So Bency, this one is for you. This is the real story. Please don’t tell people “your version”!!

Can you believe my bones were falling out and blood was everywhere and my skin was melting off??

Can you believe my bones were falling out and blood was everywhere and my skin was melting off??

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21 responses

  1. Bency’s version is hilarious. I wonder if he exaggerates just so you’ll tell him the story again. 😉 I think we all infuse our memories with emotions and they get a little jumbled. My mother-in-law is always telling me that my husband doesn’t remember things the way they really happened, but he doesn’t believe her. I probably do it too, but have no one to tell me. It’s good that you’re writing everything (almost) down for them for their own futures. 🙂

  2. Your son is a born storyteller! I love it. Also, glad to know that what initially seemed like a really scary situation turned out okay. 🙂

    I loved reading this – growing up with two other sisters you can bet there are a few versions of one event floating around. Although I will fight to the end thinking that mine is the correct version!

  3. My sister Linette’s little girl had nursemaids elbow. It popped out at least four times if I remember so Bency when you read this someday a girl beat you as far as pop outs go. And as for the mother that is recalling facts not being as you remember, me thinks she should have wrote a blog! Love you guys.

  4. When he hits “…and then I turned into a zombie!” then it might be time to dial him back. 🙂 It cracks me up when kids really exaggerate their “wounds” (even though I’m always trying to straighten out the story when they feel it necessary to tell teachers, neighbors, friends, etc). So funny!

  5. Bency, that is what most, or all children would do. It is at times for the best attention they can receive, and other situations just being afraid. All thanks to God it wasn’t worse. Thanks for sharing Melissa. Be Blessed, Mtetar

  6. What ????? You finally believe me that some of your recounted childhood memories aren’t exactly as you remember them … LOL … It’s always good when we have children of our own and actually learn from experience …. It opens our eyes to all possibilities of a child’s mind and accurate memories …… I must agree a child’s story is far greater, funnier, scarier than the actual happening and we seem to have an abundance of overactive child minds in this family …. I’m still reeling from several Recounted TALES !! Right now Jared and Bency are ( TIED ) for the Tallest, most unbelievable TALES yet !! Future authors for sure !!

  7. Funny how he exaggerates the facts there.
    Anytime, we talk about memories – especially from when we are children, you know there are some changes, alterations etc. We forget. I am sure I am ‘guilty’ of this all the time. I’m fine with it.

  8. this is so funny and i know the truth in what you speak. my middle daughter still tells everyone that i ‘threw her out of the car when we were speeding down the highway.’ the actual version is that i picked her and her sisters up at their father’s house on a quiet street in his neighborhood. as soon as she got in the car she started yelling at her sisters and acting mean. i asked her to get out of the car and step back in but to act nicely this time. she huffed and went along with it and climbed out and got back in and pouted in the back silently. then we began to drive. her version is slightly more exciting but….

  9. Well….it’s all in perception you know. Maybe to him it FELT like that.

    I get accused ALL THE TIME of not getting things straight. Perception! Perception! 😉 I can’t wait to hear how Bency tells this in another ten years!!!

  10. I think I’m like Bency! I still remember hurting my knee and elbow after I fell from the bicycle; my brothers remember it too and we all tell this story in a very dramatic way; my says we exaggerate and that it didn’t happen like that. I keep telling people it did, no mater what she says! ha!ha! 🙂 see I exaggerate my wounds all the time! 🙂

  11. Bency is definitely not lacking in the creativity department. He’ll probably turn out to be a great story teller one day. I have a similar issue with my own son. The other day my little guy told me, “Mom, remember when I was a baby in your stomach and you used to feed me coffee? Well, I didn’t like the taste of it.”

    I have no idea where kids come up with this stuff . . . 🙂

  12. Bency did you misplace your elbow
    when it fell off from your arm?
    Did your finger nails drop to the floor
    and your skin melt off?
    Did you trip upon your own young bones
    Was your blood like tomato sauce?
    or was this just a little stretch
    of your imagination that
    you thought these things?
    …of course…of course…of course

  13. Yeah we all have different memories. Your Uncle Todd & I used to have horrible fights. …he started them all! One evening our parents were in the barn & Todd was chasing me around the outside of the house & I had a butcher knife in my hand (I was doing dishes).I was yelling “He’s killing me” & Mom yelling from the barn “Go ahead”! She denied saying that until she died, but I can still hear her!
    My grandson Brayden had the elbow thing twice & now I wonder what his memories will be! Maybe I should start writing memories for them too?
    Love ya!

  14. I prefer Bency’s version with the skin melting and the fingernails falling off… makes a better story, no? I would just agree with him next time, and add your own little tidbits. You know, just to see his reaction! 🙂

  15. Ah, my son tells a similar story! He loved milk and when he was three years old had drunk a bunch of it one night before we realized he had a fever. We took him to bed with us and he spit up curdled milk all over my husband. I don’t know if he really remembers it, but he loves to tell the story for some reason. Except now his version includes where he spit up in his dad’s hair. I don’t know whey he loves to tell it like that. I think it’s a boy thing. No matter how often you set the record straight, they will always make it as shocking as they can!

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