Hi! I’m David, and I’m married to a scrapbooker!
We all like to reminisce; to take a stroll down Memory Lane, with its shop windows full of things that are familiar and heart-warming. And it’s even more fun and fulfilling to do this with family members or friends.
Even kids love doing this. And from a fairly early age too! In fact, it’s usually my own kids who initiate these nostalgia sessions at our house.
We will be sitting around the dinner table, or playing a board-game and one of them will get the ball rolling with the phrase “remember that one time?” And off they go, laughing and giggling as they recount their favorite memories with an astonishing attention to detail!
After a while the conversation will swing around to me.
“Hey dad! Remember that one time when uncle Jim was pulling the sled behind his four-wheeler, and Ollie (our pet Labrador back in the day) kept jumping all over you and licking your face?”
Then another kid jumps in. “Oh, and remember the time that I beat you at racing when we did the olympics in our backyard!” This comment is followed by a chorus of “Yeah!”s, and one of my youngest kids laughs and says “You were so slow dad!”
I can feel my stubbornness kicking in at this point. “That never happened! Seriously, when did that happen?”
“When we lived in the Enoch house, in Utah.”
“You mean 5 years ago!? How would you even remember that?”
Then my 8 year old smiles at me and says, “I guess you’re getting old dad.”
Now, I’m willing to admit that after the third or fourth time that this happened, my eight year old’s words began to get to me – which I’m sure was all part of her devious plan.
Maybe I was getting old. Maybe my memory was going the way of the dinosaurs, along with my knees and my fashion sense. Honestly, I can barely make it through the day without a power nap anymore! Maybe the little heathen was right!
So, I did what anyone would do; I bumped up my quarterly trip over to WebMD to diagnose myself with the 12 or 13 diseases that I had surely contracted in my old age, and that were almost certainly going to put me in an early grave.
As I was browsing, I stumbled onto an article that cited a research study done last year about age-related memory loss. Apparently normal memory loss ramps up between the ages of 30 and 60. I’ve been in that bracket for 6 years already!
There it was! It was official! I was…i was…ummm. What was I just saying?
Oh yeah! That had to be it! It was the onset of natural memory loss that explained why my kids remembered things that had happened to me better than I did.
Well, a short while later I was flipping through one of my wife’s many scrapbooks, and to my surprise I found a picture of myself being slobbered on by our dog.
I flipped through more pages and, lo and behold there I was again, losing footraces to my kids during our spontaneous Memorial Day Olympics in the backyard of our house in Enoch, Utah.
I spent the next few hours looking through the visual Family History that my wife had put together, reliving other moments that I had completely forgotten about. Like the time that my wife and I and some of our friends and family camped outside of the new Costa Vida, in the middle of November, to get a year’s worth of free food.
It had been so much fun, and the crazy thing was that I began to remember details about the experience that hadn’t been captured by the camera. It was like these layouts had burst some mental floodgate wide open, allowing me to experience a sudden and very satisfying recall of my past.
Now, I knew that my kids spent hours every month or two going back through these albums. I just hadn’t put two and two together until then. These scrapbooking pages were the magic behind their impressive memory skills…the thing that had kept all of those old memories so fresh in their minds so many years later!
In that moment, I suddenly felt very grateful for the way that my wife’s passion was keeping a window open into the best and brightest of my children’s memories. And, I’ve got to say I was also very grateful for proof that I wasn’t losing my mind! Yet.
Since then, I’ve committed to spending more of my own time looking through my wife’s scrapbooking albums, with my kids when I can. And, through the magic of scrapbooking, our trips down Memory Lane are more satisfying than ever!
Do you ever experience moments of forgetfulness? If so, please share in the comments section below. It will make me feel a lot better!
Join David next month for another fun edition! Think you’ve missed an edition of Married to a Scrapbooker? See them all under the Married to a Scrapbooker tag section on the Blog.