Thursday, 6 October 2011

It's amazing how the mind works

My first pet was a cat. I think I was probably 3 or so, my parents were still together so I couldn't have been very old. Her name was Pepper, and I think I even have a recollection (albeit vague) of going to get her at the pet store in the mall, but I could be completely wrong about that. I think she was either all black or perhaps a very dark tabby? With a name like Pepper, it would seem that would be logical.

I don't have a lot of recollection of the cat herself, just that we had one, but I don't remember interacting with it in anyway. When my parents separated my Dad couldn't take the cat as he traveled for work at times (he was a senior systems analyst for Dow Chemical Canada at the time) and couldn't always be there for it. My Mom decided she didn't want it either so off Pepper went to be a barn cat at my Great Aunt Jean and Uncle Raymond's house.  I remember seeing her one other time (I think I was probably 6 or so by then) and she had just had kittens. I know she was not pleased when we came near her and her kittens - but being 6 at the time, I took it to mean she was mad at me for sending her away when my parents separated and divorced. It can sometimes be truly tragic how a child's mind works. You store things. Frozen snapshots of mini super 8 movies in your mind's eye. And some of those memories (even though you may not want to) you recall anyway. Sometimes those memories are fuzzy or hazy, sometimes they jade or clear up over time. Sometimes you wish you could forget them completely.

I remember what I perceived as the day my Dad moved out. Although in retrospect I don't think it was? Maybe it was, I'm not sure. I just remember my Dad getting into the little yellow Toyota that they had (which he had actually bought for my Mom, but when it ended up being a total lemon Mom didn't want it anymore so it became my Dad's car - whoops!) and him backing out of the drive. If I close my eyes, I'm standing on our front lawn with my Mom and Sister. It's sunny out...and warm. Mid-day or so? Maybe late morning...My Dad backs out of the drive and is watching me. He stops at the end of the yard and looks at the house, Mom, Kristen and me. He is sad...terribly sad. I don't recall if he was crying or not. I remember running to about mid-lawn and yelling out to him "Daddy don't go..." I have a vague recollection of him telling me to go back to my Mom and slowly starting to drive away. The last moment I have of that memory is of me crying, my Dad driving away and me yelling after him. "Don't leave me Daddy!". I've never brought this memory up to my Dad. I think it would truly hurt him that I remember this. He wasn't leaving me of course but even so I think the fact that I remember that day would really upset him.

Some memories I wish I could just forget.

One Last Glimpse,


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