My memories began to form some time before my third birthday. This is easy to measure, because we moved from Pittsburgh to Wichita right after my third birthday, so any memory in Pittsburgh must be from when I was two.
I remember one afternoon in Pittsburgh when my mother and I had just gotten home. We parked the car in the garage and there, in the driveway outside the open garage door, was the basketball hoop. We were playing with the basketball. I asked my mother to throw the basketball as high as she could, blithely sure that if she did so, it would never, ever come back down.
It came back down. I was thunderstruck. It’s one of those seminal memories–a “lightbulb” moment–in which one’s perspective shifts. My parents weren’t omnipotent. There were some things they couldn’t do.
Mimi is just past two and a quarter, so we still have a few months before she reaches that age. She still believes in ultimates and absolutes… for a while. Today while playing with her toy dinosaurs, she asked me where the dino-biggest-saurus was.
I don’t know, kid. I still wish I did. Probably we all wish it.