9.4 Making Memories

You know how when you’re little, every day is an eternity?

Infant Arianna looks up at her mother.
Mama! It’s been years since I last saw you!

Your entire world is a blue bassinet and a few familiar faces. You never know when they might appear. Everything is new and worth remembering.

Then you go to school. And the days start to speed by, just a bit. English, Math, Science, everyday it’s the same classes. But there’s still plenty of new things to try out. I made a lot of pictures when I was little. And looking over them, I could remember my mood and what I was thinking about perfectly.

Ari sits at her art desk and paints a picture.
I called this one Migration Makeover.

For example in this one, I was trying to figure out how to draw birds as well as how best to apply glitter without getting it all over your sister’s half of the room. We were learning about the migration of birds in science class and I’d spent the day at the library looking up photo books for my report. Whenever I look at this picture I can still hear my mom listening to Makeover on the radio out in the hall.

Ari stands up from her chair, walls covered in art, a finished painting on the table.
My last artistic masterpiece was called: Rocky Road.

Oh, and I defiantly remember this picture! It was the final one I had to submit to be considered “artistically gifted.” I was working with macaroni by then and Uncle Luthor was annoyed that all the pasta kept going missing. But macaroni is the best way to give your 2D art that 3D feel. Plus those spoke noodles make perfect wheels.

When you’re a kid, there are still plenty of days when new things happen so while school might be a drag, the rest of life is still plenty long. I remember getting to stay up late playing chess with my dad and Uncle Luthor helping us both learn how to play. It was special because Dad only played chess with me. Not with Ell or Hank.

Ari and Bane play chess. Luthor stands nearby in his sports uniform to advise.
We both lost this game. Uncle Luthor threw up his hands in disgust and said we were incompetent players.

And we would do our homework after school on the back patio. Ell would always get annoyed at our brother because he though he knew so much more than us.

Ari, Ell, and Hank as children sit around the patio table. Ari is eat a hotdog, the other two work on homework.
Hank refused to help Ell with her biology homework.

But slowly you start repeating experiences. And all the times you did your homework on the back porch start to blur together.

Ari carefully doing her own homework at the same table as the previous picture.
I think this was my essay on the genetic diversity of peas…or else it’s when I was working on a book report for Dust to Dust by Citizenerased14?

The days start to speed up. Hours spent playing the piano blur between days.

Ari playing the piano with two fingers.
Is this the day I learned The Butterfly Ballad?

Watching sports with Dad in the living room over dinner. We’re not a big sit-down and eat family.

Bane with slice of cake sits next to Ari with her mac and cheese. They are chatting amicably.
Is this the day the Llamas won the Glassbowl?
Bane is eating spaghetti, Ari is wearing her swimming trunks and tank top, and Hank sits next to her - with fish or chicken for dinner.
Or perhaps they won this day?

Different days, but the memories are blurred.

You can still get those time-stretching memories, but only when doing exceptionally rare things, like camping.

This is mainly to show that the girls have the same haircut when they go to bed. And no glasses. Elleanor (yellow) is walking up to Arianne (in red) who holds a glass of milk.
Ell and I woke up hours before anyone else most mornings.

Camping sticks out because it’s new and different among the monotony of school and life. That weekend lasted an entire summer in my memory. But all too soon it’s your birthday and then you’re a teenager.

Ari blows out her candles.
I wish –

And the days triple in speed.

The twins as teenagers. Ari's hair is no longer in pigtails, but cut short and the tips dyed pink. Ell has her hair braided.
Cheese!

There’s fewer and fewer chances that you’re doing something new enough to make a strong memories.

Bane and teenager Ari play cheese. It's daytime and no Luthor to coach.
Still playing chess on the lawn with dad.
Ari and Ell have mac and cheese at the dining room table.
Still eating dinner.
Ari has cake while Uncle Luthor plays with clay. They are on the back porch.
Every night.
Ari and Bane have dinner, they both are eating fish tacos. And are sitting at the patio bar.
Without fail.
Ari and Hank watch ping pong on TV. Hank is eating cereal.
Atlhough this one might be breakfast? It’s hard to remember.

A few events do stick out. But they’re firsts. Like the first time I went fishing.

Ari finishing out in front of the house. She looks quite relaxed.
I caught a Tetra! And named him Tetris!

But did I catch anything the next time?

Ari in her gym clothes and hat, fishing at midnight.
I think I caught a Bass one night. Maybe it was this night?
Ari during the day, her rod is bowed under the fish weight. Although it may have been a false bite.
Or perhps during the day? I’m pretty sure it was at this fishing spot.

So I’ve started painting. I was curious to see if painting would allow that altered state I got as a kid where I remembered even the music I was listening to. If nothing else than to catch a moment of what would otherwise be forgotten.

Ari paints outside in perfect view of Shelby, the cowplant. Her painting is currently unfinished.
I called this painting: Haystack. I defiantly remember Shelby and I were listening to Vanity by Roman Holloway.

You don’t even have to paint a picture of what you see. Just the act of paining something new gives that moment in time a bit more ooph. A bit more stability against the crush of repetition. Haystack was painted right after Dad got his promotion and built a sauna down in the basement with the bonus.

Bane and Connie in the Sauna.
Dad and mom really like the sauna.

So while memories can slip through your fingers like sand. There are ways to hold on to them. Find a way to make every moment unique and it’ll be easier to remember. It’s important to remember as much as possible, because it goes all too quickly once you’re older. And there comes a time when you won’t be able to make more memories.

At that time, you don’t want to regret how little you remember from time spent together.

Everyone is in the kitchen as someone lies dead on the floor, bright light radiates from his body covering his face. It's Bane, if you want to know.
This is one of those memories you don’t need help remembering.

Previous | Next: Moving On

7 comments

    • Thanks. Yes. It is Bane. His death wasn’t a surprise, but it was sad. I’ll miss the sarcastic attention-seeker. I was trying to figure out how to get all that happened during their teenagerdom into a post or two. With the theme of memories, it seemed fitting to end with his death.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yeah. It was a beautiful post. I really miss Bane. I’m not sure why I fell for him the way I did–I think it has to do both with how you wrote his voice and with how that voice matched his face and actions in the screenshots. He seems like he was really interesting to have played. I’ll miss him very much.

        Like

  1. I love this! I feel sad that Bane passed in this part, but I love how much insight is poured out in this chapter. It’s true that our memories fly by. Some faster than others, others slower. And I hope the family’s happy memories with Bane helps to ease their pain at his passing.

    Liked by 1 person

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