Several years ago, I was sat in work across from a colleague. It was a quiet time of the day, and she nonchalantly said to me “Don’t your earlobes stick out.” I replied, “That’s because I’ve had cosmetic surgery on my ears.” My colleague then said, “Really? You can’t tell.” To which I replied, “Yes you can. My earlobes stick out.” My colleague fell about laughing, blaming me for making her go purple.
But it was true. When I was a lot younger, I think it was when I was in infant’s school, I went into hospital to have my ears pinned back. I was being teased by some other children because of my ears (notice I haven’t used the word ‘bullied’!) and this was to make me look more like the other children. I was only in hospital for three days, and then wore a bandage around my head for the next ten weeks. For some reason, I thought I looked like a spaceman. It’s funny, the things you think when you are little.
I saw an old photo of me the other day, with my big sticky-out ears, beaming smile and bright eyes. It got me thinking how much I have changed over the years, yet how much of me is still the same. I definitely have not got the same body, that’s for sure. So my mind is still the same. But, my thoughts are completely different to when I was in that picture, so my mind isn’t the same. A new mind and a new body, yet I am still the same person. Life is absolutely amazing when you start to look at it in great detail! I had to apologise to the photo of little me in case I had changed to something completely unrecognisable, but that little one is still there, so I had nothing to worry about! I can’t go about second guessing where I might have been if I’d done something differently, and sometimes certain routes lead to the same place anyway!
I’m not sure whether it was around this time, maybe it was a little later; I had to go to the dentist to have a tooth extracted. I had to be ‘put out’ rather than having an injection. I’ve had many weird and wonderful dreams over the years, and many of them I can remember, but the dream I had this day is one of the weirdest dreams, in my opinion, ever. As I was breathing in the ether, as I called it, through the rubber mask that left an awful smell in my nose and taste in my mouth for a few days after, I started to drift off to sleep. In that moment, I dreamt of some animated dots sweeping around the blackness, creating what I think was an equilateral triangle. I’ve heard of people dreaming of past lives, great adventures and other wonderful stuff when they were ‘going under’, but this was a first. I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned it since then, so this is the first time. Occasionally, I still get glimpses of those dots and that triangle.
And finally, in this mini montage of my memories, a few years after the dentist trip, I went on a trip of a different kind. We were holidaying in North Wales, and my brother, cousin and I were walking along the sea wall. I spotted a Superman kite flying in the sky, and got caught up in the moment watching it swoosh up and down. Bit of a silly thing to do really, as one side of the wall had a steep drop, with large boulders at the bottom of the drop. The other side was a lesser drop to the concrete pavement. My attention was grabbed by Superman – I was, and still am, a huge fan – and imagined all sorts of things. I imagined I was flying. I wasn’t – I’d actually walked off the wall, but luckily for me, not off the steep-drop side. I crashed to the ground, and then woke up from my daydream. To laughter. I was fine, apart from my right index finger, where I couldn’t touch the finger tip. I had to learn a different way of writing, as I couldn’t even hold a pen. The finger tip ballooned. It was sore and swollen for the rest of the holiday, and when we were back home, I was taken to the doctors, who said I needed to go to hospital to get it checked out. I remembered the three days I spent there with my ears, and wasn’t keen, but this time I wasn’t staying in. I’d had a pulp infection for some reason, and the only way to make it better was to slice the finger tip, which the doctors and nurses did. Whilst squirting water on it which made no difference to the pain whatsoever. I was glad it was over when it finally was I’ll tell you. It hurt a bit more afterwards too… at least it was flat again! The weird thing was I heard one of the nurses saying that my finger was just the same as another boy’s the day before. I imagined him falling off a wall as well to get his pulp infection.
I really must try to think of some more recent tales to tell. These older memories are starting to make me realise that I am not as young as I once was…