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Childhood Lost, Childhood Found

When I was maybe five years old my parents bought a bunch of sand. I guess it was to go under the deck, but they also left a GIANT pile of it on the side of the yard. It became hugely popular with the neighborhood kids. One day I was playing in my own personal sand dune when a strange little girl showed up and started to play with me. She had been walking along the street and saw the sand pile, so Mere came over to investigate. I hadn't seen her in the neighborhood before; Mom assumed she was from a couple streets down. We played for hours. When it was around dinner time, my mother came out to offer to walk the little girl home. Since Mere looked to be about four years old, Mom didn't want her to walk by herself. We lived on the main neighborhood street and traffic could be scary. So the three of us set off for her house, with her in the lead showing us the way. And we were walking, and we were walking, and we were walking. The crazy child had walked across nearly the entire neighborhood. Are you impressed yet?

We became great friends. Even though I was older, I learned soooooo much from her. She was independent and brave and somehow more worldly (?Can't quite find the right word?). She taught me how to climb a tree (heights terrify me), she taught me the facts of life via a Barbie doll demonstration (not at four, that came later), and she taught me to be yourself and defy expectations (who else wore a tutu to school?). She reminded me of Leslie in Bridge to Terebithia - a real free spirit and an inspiration.

We lost touch after a move, but I continued to think of her and frequently share stories about some of our childhood adventures. Toaster even made a comment about her a week or so ago. She was one of the two people from my childhood I hoped to find via Facebook. Oddly enough, one of them I found accidently via LiveJournal, but I never could find Mere. Guess what. Today she found me! How insanely cool is that?

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( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
magnet5
Nov. 24th, 2008 05:53 am (UTC)
Kamaria001 had a similar experience. I think that's awesome.
madladyred
Nov. 25th, 2008 12:53 am (UTC)
Cool for Kamaria! I don't quite know what I'm expecting (meeting up to play on the jungle gym and slumber parties), but it's enough just to know to know she's alive and happy and has fond memories of me. I called my mom today to see if I had the ages right, and it turns out I was four and she was three - LOL! Anyway, I am supposed to send Mere my parents' address so that her mom can write. I hope she does! Her mom was the ONLY person allowed to pull my teeth when I was little. :)
herzograven
Nov. 24th, 2008 08:10 am (UTC)
that is truly kickass!
is she living nearby so you guys can visit or is she zillion miles away?

i've kept in touch with (more or less) most of my childhood friends but there are a few i'd love to run into again

just before reading your post i was driving home from walmart and had found some german christmas chocolate that we used to get during the season there .... and when i opened it the smell brought back countless happy and worry-free memories back while i was driving .... funny how just the smell of something can trigger such a strong emotional response

so yea i can relate to "childhood flashbacks" with you there

awesome that she found you, i guess after all, facebook has its use :D
madladyred
Nov. 25th, 2008 03:18 am (UTC)
Wow - I can't believe you found German Christmas chocolates at WalMart. Still, I know what you mean and I love that emotional response. They say smell is one of the strongest triggers.

She's a zillion miles away. :( But at least I can visit virtually. :)

I lost touch with almost everyone from Tallahassee and many of my high school friends. I moved from Tally when I was around 12 and just never thought about getting mailing addresses at that age. I wish they'd do a middle school reunion! I did better with my close friends from high school and kept up with them for about ten years, then I got a real job and got too busy to write. My high school reunion put me back in touch with loads of people from high school, but not with some of my closest friends. I'm hoping to find them again, but I'm afraid unless they have a LJ account I'll just lose them all over again due to my lousy letter writing skills. I suck!


Edited at 2008-11-25 03:19 am (UTC)
captain_drew
Nov. 24th, 2008 02:53 pm (UTC)
Sounds like a book where a magical wood elf came to find you!
madladyred
Nov. 25th, 2008 01:07 am (UTC)
I did kind of paint her as my manic pixie dream-girl, didn't I? But I have so many happy memories from those elementary school years, and she was pretty darn incredible. She was actually only three-years-old when she walked up to our house, not four. Her whole family was cool. Her mom was the only person I trusted as a child to pull my teeth when they were loose, and her dad was named Briscoe - such a super cool name. Therefore, based on such overwhelming evidence, the magical wood elf comparison is totally justified.
sarahtoalaska
Nov. 24th, 2008 08:13 pm (UTC)
That's awesome! I left to many people behind... most of whom I don't even remember their names... they are just living in my head, bright blinks in a dark space.
madladyred
Nov. 25th, 2008 03:29 am (UTC)
I don't remember many of their names, either. I keep intending to get out my yearbooks, but girls names change so often that it seems pointless. I like your description of bright blinks in a dark space! That's quite apt. They are tied up in some beautiful memories. :)

I want to find my best friend from high school. It's completely my fault that I've lost her, she was the last to write me, but I lost her address. My other best friend from high school owes me a letter from at least a year ago, so that's on her! But I'd still like to hear from her.

I'm not sure what I will do if I do find them. I still am a terrible letter writer, so I'm sure I'll just lose them again. :( My devious plan is to talk them into joining LJ...
sarahtoalaska
Nov. 25th, 2008 07:11 pm (UTC)
I'm a horrible letter writer. However I still manage to have a few pen Pals. Usually what I do is only write on really fun stuff. Pretty stationary an what have you. Then I won't let myself do anything else until I have written my letter. I almost have to blackmail myself into it. I can't work on my socks until I write my letter.

That's the only why it works for me.
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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