Week Twelve: Kathy Benson

What is the first memory you have?

 One of my earliest memories is from when my family lived in our first house, a cape cod style home on the south side of Evanston, Illinois, where I was born and raised. I would have been between three and four years old, as we moved to the north side the month after I turned four. I only have three memories from living in that house. I have seen lots of photographs and home movies, as well as heard many stories, so at times I find it hard to distinguish which memories are real and which have become memory-like after seeing and hearing so much about what happened when I was a toddler and then preschool age.

I recall getting up the courage to go downstairs into our big yellow basement/playroom all by myself. I loved playing down there, but I also found it somewhat scary if someone else wasn’t with me.  When I got there I decided that I would try to do and sing the “Hokey Pokey.” I got off to a good start, but then my imagination got the best of me and I ran back upstairs where my mom was waiting for me in the kitchen to comfort me and make me feel safe.

It was one of many times throughout my life when I felt scared that I found being with my mom comforting. To this day she is one of the first people that I want to connect with during difficult and uncertain times. My mom is a great listener, gives thoughtful advice and knows how to make her family and friends, especially her children and grandchildren, feel safe, special and loved unconditionally. 

This memory is timely for me to be reflecting on and sharing about as this weekend my family is celebrating my mother’s 70th birthday. Over 35 years later I still find comfort in going to my mom when I am scared. I hope and pray that she will be there for me through many more birthdays and am grateful to have had her in my life, as both my mother and one of my best friends all these years.

What is the first memory you have?


Kathy Benson is a bereaved and blessed mom, writer and group fitness instructor trying to live mindfully and find joy in the journey after dealing with secondary infertility and loss for five years. She lives in Chicago, Illinois with her husband and two living children.

Kathy blogs at Bereaved and Blessed. You can also follow Kathy on Twitter @BereavedBlessed and her Facebook page.


2 thoughts on “Week Twelve: Kathy Benson

  1. Pingback: Thursday’s Voice: Week Twelve

  2. What an interesting writing prompt. I also have trouble distinguishing whether my first memories are real memories or just stories that I have heard so often that they feel like memories. Hope you have a wonderful time celebrating your mother’s birthday this weekend.

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