Making Memories

I never really thought about making memories until the last few years, not because of all this saga going on at the moment or anything else that’s happened around us, but just because my children were growing up and I wasn’t consumed in nappy changing, making bottles and potty training. Instead my little girl Macey (who is 4 years older than Freddie) was blossoming into this beautiful young child and Freddie was transitioning from toddler to small boy. Macey would often ask John and I about our childhoods, mine was like a fairytale from start to finish and I always strive to give my children the childhood I had. I would tell them stories of our Sunday routine, driving to Cosham to collect my nan and grandad, roast chicken or beef always cooking in the oven, my dad and Grandad taking us to the local working men’s club, where we would have a bottle of coke to share between me, my sister and two brothers. We would always do a raffle and have a packet of poppets to eat on the way home. There I learned how to play pool and my inner Tom boy thrived in those years. We would walk home and would feast on a big fat roast, Grandad would tell us kids old war stories, whilst him and my dad would have a few whiskeys. By about 5pm they would be asleep on the sofa and grandad glasses would always be crooked on his face! Because dinner was usually served lunchtime ish we would have a sandwich tea, usually something like cheese and cucumber sandwiches and a half moon lemon marble cake for afters. Being a child of the 80’s and 90’s, on special occasions we would always have the odd shandy too. John would tell Macey and Freddie about his long summers at his grandparents who lived by the sea and how he was just dropped in the ‘drink’ to learn how to swim. For John the smell of the sea will always bring them memories flooding back and for me whenever I smell a roast dinner cooking, it always brings back a homely, safe feeling and funny enough the smell of cigarette smoke and mints combined always reminds me of my mum, even though I don’t smoke and neither does she now, that always reminds me of her and it brings a slight comfort.

So thinking about memories we both have as children and raising our children through them toddler years has been a story to tell. But what about making memories for now and the future? Do you just do? Do you go out of your way to make specific memories? Social media has played a massive role in memories from the last 8 years, timehop is a brilliant app, looking back at what you did 1,2,5 years ago. But some of them memories are going to be bad, well for us anyway – particulary this last year.

So it’s got me thinking. None of us know when our number is up. Should  we be making memories for our children and families now? Regardless of our prognosis.

Ive purchased a book called “Dear mum, from you to me”. It’s a journal that’s designed for any mum to complete for their children to look back on in years to come. The pages are clean and easy to understand. One question maybe, “what was I like as a baby”? Something a child won’t ask now, but maybe when they have children they may want to know, so you can write a whole page of what your child was like as a baby. There is also other questions such as “give me some interesting facts about our family”. It will take some time to complete, but once completed its invaluable.

Ive got memory boxes for both my children from when they were babies, it has things like their first blanket, first outfit, hospital wristbands and greetings cards. This has also got me wondering wether I should start a memory box for each child from me. Who knows how long I have left to live, I could live for the next 15 years and then there could be this miracle cure, or I could get hit by a bus tomorrow (sorry I know that sounds dramatic, but just using opposite ends of the scale) So with this in mind I have decided to buy a blue and pink box and start gathering memories. Items on my list to add are photographs of us all together, I’ve become very lazy at printing out photographs and just tend to store them on the hardrive or Facebook. Other items could be like a special event we have attended, putting the stub of the ticket inside the box. Clearly I realise that most memories do live in our heads, but with Freddie only being 5 I want him to remember as much as he can without it taking any extra effort from him.

So in a nutshell, memories can take us right back, sometimes memories pop up that I didn’t  even realise were stored in my brain, mostly when I smell a particular scent, or hear some music that reminds me of that time.

Should we just let memories be and let them happen naturally? Or do you thinking making and documenting memories is a morbid thing? Or just something we all should do? I believe it is something we all should do, regardless of our circumstances. I’d love to hear your thoughts xx

One thought on “Making Memories”

  1. From one Michelle to another, words can not describe how brave and courageous you are not just as a woman but as a mother, you move me deeply and you must do the same too many women, wether or not they have had breast cancer, we are all potentially ticking time bombs! I know that sounds harsh but it’s true as 1 in 7/8 women are diagnosed. You are very honest with your blog Michelle but also as a nurse you are creating awareness, you are a true professional, as well as a warm loving human being. God bless you and your family, I have to say that working for PHT I have the utmost faith in our breast surgery, breast screening & oncology team, working alongside these specialists they truly are an amazing team of people, doing the very best for you that they can. Keep fighting and being positive, you will beat this. Keep making memories, scrap booking is really a good way of putting photos and memories into special albums and writing lots of information using acid free ink pens as the ink never fades, Hobbycraft have all the equipment etc have fun with crafting it’s rewarding. Take care xxx

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