I’ve always had a bit of a block when it comes to story writing so bear with me… this first part is only an introduction that is somewhat essayish but I am a bit nervous about writing dialogue(but I’ll get there) as that has often been my downfall. Besides the beginnings of a horribly generic and poorly written story on here about a year ago I have never written anything much outside of school, but I liked the basic premise so I figured I’d give it a try.
Things I Wish I Could Forget
I feel very odd about writing down these accounts for the simple reason that it seems almost pointless to do so considering my condition. Maybe I wrote them for someone else to read in the hopes that someone else would be able to relate to these writings, that someone will view me as a person and not as a science experiment or even worse a freak. Maybe I even wrote them to convince myself of my sanity, something I have had to do many times over the last ten years and something I will have to do many more times throughout my life. I suppose that I am even a bit ashamed of myself which I suppose is the reason I have decided not to enclose any personal information, including my real name throughout this story. I should make it clear that all personal identities and places have been changed for means of privacy, but that all the dates and events discussed in this writing are entirely accurate for reasons that will become clear very shortly. I don’t want this to sound like the account of another twenty something who refuses to grow up, another bull shit story of a college dropout who never quite lived to his full potential, because it’s so much more poignant than that and to me so much more heart breaking. I will end this introduction by saying that I did not initially tend to write my story about the stark truths of adulthood or the absence of warmth and security one becomes accustomed to during childhood. This is simply the story of an interesting character, me, coping with an incredibly complex and somewhat inexplicable situation, but I will do my best to explain.
Hyperthymesia is a condition that allows one to have an extremely accurate biographical memory, a memory so accurate that one can remember individual details from individual days that have occurred years, sometimes even decades in the past. As of now according to Wikipedia(note, while I realize this is not an entirely accurate source I felt as though some context was necessary here) approximately five people in the entire world have been diagnosed with this condition, most famously actress Marilu Henner of the popular seventies sitcom Taxi, a show that aired well before I was born in 1991. As of now there is absolutely no known cause for Hyperthymesia, although scientists suggest that the brain of Hyperthymesia patients functions similar to that of a brain with someone with obsessive compulsive disorder. The reason I am telling you all of this, about hyperthymesia, is because I can fairly accurately remember nearly every day of my life since I was six years old, making me the sixth ever case of hyperthymesia, although I personally believe that there are more than five of us, people like me who want to keep their memories and identities anonymous from the general public. At first hyperthymesia may seem like a miraculous gift and a god given talent, I myself even attempted to look at it that way, but looking back I think there is a reason that people forget things.
I can remember most of my childhood in such terrifying detail that I have often turned to substances, mostly marijuana and alcohol, in an attempt to mute these memories. I remember December third of 1998 when my mother started crying, when she yelled at him that alcohol was more important to him than her own son. I remember the sound she made when he punched her just below her left eye, a sound more of sorrow than pain, a sound I didn’t understand as a child but one that haunts my dreams into my adulthood. I remember the bruise I saw under her eye on December fourth of that same year, remember the lies she told her friends about how she fell down the stairs, typical domestic abuse bullshit. I remember the divorce of two thousand and how my parents couldn’t be in the same room without a physical altercation occurring. I don’t remember specific details about the case because I spent a lot of the time with my grandparents during my parents legal troubles so almost all of the information I got was word of mouth, and the word of mouth I received was altered for a seven year old in an attempt to hide how fucked up the situation truly was. I remember the small apartment we lived in in 2001, the gunshots I heard outside the window or the odd smell that often wafted into my room through the apartments thin walls, our next door neighbor would die on February fourth two thousand and two as a result of a crystal meth overdose, explaining the smell.
Now comes the odd part, the part of my introduction that makes the least amount of sense yet also the part of my introduction that I consider to be the most important. I will go on record and say that despite my traumatic childhood, despite the fact that my Dad was and is a drunken abusive asshole who destroys everything he touches, including the lives of many people, that my mother is and has always been a saint. While I don’t have specific memories from before the age of six based on information I have pieced together based on the accounts of my parents and family members that my family life had always been fairly traumatic and that my parents always had a fairly tumultuous relationship, to say the least. I think this is the reason I was babied the way I was, and no, I’m not the kid who slept in a giant nursery with a mommy or daddy who bought me pacifiers and onesies and who cooed at me and told me how cute I was like those other ABDL stories would have you believe, but I did wear diapers, at least until just before my sixth birthday. I know exactly what you’re thinking, that I am full of shit because most kids are potty trained at the VERY LATEST at the age of four and that no preschool would accept a kid at that age who was still in diapers. What you have to understand, what makes my story unique, is that my Dad was a lazy drunk who primarily worked odd jobs at odd hours, making him my primary guardian, and to his credit while this does seem like bad judgement on my mothers part he was never ever violent towards me, only towards her. However, like most any addict, while he provided basic care such as changing me or feeding me he cared much more about his alcohol than he did about me so I was often left to my own devices when it came to playing and certainly when it came to potty training. I never went to preschool because we lived in a fairly poor area so the preschools near my house were generally overcrowded day care centers and because we lived in the extremely expensive state of California most families were comprised of two working parents in order to make ends meet, making the pre school wait lists excessively long, and a spot was never guaranteed. Now that I’ve talked about my Dad and my strange potty training let’s go back to my mother so I can explain why she has always been a saint. I suppose the best way I can explain the situation, and even then I’m not explaining it nearly well enough, is when a married couple with a child falls out of love with one another they begin to fall in love with the child, at least that’s what my mother did. It was hard for me to understand at the time how she could love me so much but still allow me to be cared for by a man who was drunk most of the time, but looking back when I was with my Dad she was working three part time jobs in order to keep a roof over my head and food on the table. You may ask where the Grandparents I mentioned earlier were and why they were unable to care for me while my mother was at work, but she immigrated to the United States on a work visa in the early eighties, leaving my grandparents back in London. The point of me telling you all of this is that my mother has always been my guardian angel and has always provided and cared for me, even while she was experiencing the toughest times of her life. Of the few memories I have before the age of six I remember needing to wear a specific type of diaper, I believe Pampers Cruisers Size 6, because I had very sensitive skin as a child and most of the other diapers would result in severe itchy diaper rash. This was a pretty big deal because at the time, maybe even still, Pampers diapers were significantly more expensive than the generic diapers that most large retailers manufacture, but because I was still in diapers at the time they were a fairly expensive necessity.
I’m rambling a bit, I often feel the need to over express myself because I am often anxious that I am not being specific enough, especially in this story, because these details of the past help me explain and rationalize events that have occurred in the present, or at the very least the not so distant past. I suppose the next part of my childhood is somewhat of a gray area because I do have some basic memory of this time, much more than what the average person could recall from being five years old, yet not nearly as specific as my memories from the age of six and onward. I remember individual fragments and details, many of which are shaped or enhanced from old photographs that my mother used to take on our various outings when she was able to get some time off of work. There’s a picture of us at a baseball game with me dressed in an Anaheim angels t shirt that reads “little slugger” and a pair of jean shorts, the plastic of a diaper slightly visible peaking from the waistband of my jeans. I’m snuggled in my moms lap with a smile on my face and I look genuinely happy and genuinely comfortable. Another picture in one of mom’s scrapbooks, it’s me at Disneyland meeting Mickey Mouse, the dumbest ecstatic grin on my face and a fairly saggy diaper bulging through my shorts, but what can I say besides I was excited to meet my idol.
Now ignore the diapers, even though they have their part to play in the story, ignore the baseball game and ignore Disneyland, but focus on the description of my comfort when I was snuggling with my mother or focus on the description of the smile when I’m meeting Mickey Mouse. My mother knew we had a traumatic home life, my mother knew that a kid shouldn’t be raised by an alcoholic and because of this she gave me everything she could, even if it wasn’t much. I remember loving being cuddled in her lap or her calming voice reading me a story as I drifted off to sleep. I was never given excessive attention, she was always too busy for that, but on the few occasions that I was fussed over I remember a feeling of warmth, a feeling that I was truly safe and cared for, an invaluable feeling when you have a loud drunk for a Dad. That feeling of warmth and protection was a feeling I constantly sought after, a feeling I have lusted over and desired until this day, a feeling that awoke a sense of longing to be cared for.
Now consider my condition one last time, hyperthymesia. I remember virtually every fight my parents have ever had, I remember the time when my high school sweetheart cheated on me with my best friend and told me that she never really loved me, and it’s not just the fight I remember but the exact date of the fight and virtually every word I said. I remember every fuck up, the drunken nights where I would search for comfort in drugs or alcohol, the fear of turning out like my father the next morning, and the guilt and self deprecation associated with waking up with another hangover and another pile of vomit at the side of my bed, something that has happened far too frequently. We live in a masculine society, a society that tells people to “man up and sack up” but I am apparently not as strong willed as the men who say such things, not as strong as society forces us to be, and because of that I have turned to vices that have turned me into my father, or I used to before I met her. I suppose she is truly the main character of this story even though it is written from my perspective, someone who was finally willing to care for me but also someone that brought back horrible memories, memories that I have certainly not forgotten as much as I have suppressed them and locked them in the back of my mind as a means to protect myself. This is the story about a girl I met who gave me the sense of protection and safety I always longed for, but also the story of the things I wish I could forget.