Thursday 13 July 2023

No two children have the same parents.

I speak repeatedly of becoming aware of my youngest becoming an only child, as the older two live their adult lives. But I realise now her whole life has been slightly different.

It was highlighted when driving home from the Hunter and we decided to stop for lunch on the beach at Terrigal. "Which beach?" she asked. 

"You know, near Star of the sea"


"The place with the water slide between two pools"


"We used to go with Ronny and Rex*"

"Which ones are they?"

(*These are friends kids we have know since birth and gone on many weekends away and week's skiing together - the kids match the older two in age, 2 share a name and a week apart in birth days. I made up the names here to protect the innocent)

After I explain, she replies: 

"No, I don't remember."

And it dawned on me she was probably pretty little the last time we went. Every year we would go away to Terrigal for the weekend and share a very glam apartment in a resort with another family. The kids adored it. Even when we thought they were probably too old for it, they asked to go back and after a few years hiatus, we returned. We must have been there 10 times across 14 years....but of course, she would have been 4 or 5 the last time we went.

I don't know if it's my age and ever increasing nostalgia but I felt sad that all these fabulous memories we worked so hard to make for the kids someone elude the youngest.

It dawned on me, that while I was well aware no two children have the same parents, they don't even have the same family memories. Family memories are my memories. My memories of the kids. The kids might have a different memory completely.

Just makes me more resolved to make sure she has some magical ones of her own.

(On the plus, I had taken her and a friend up to the Hunter for the Snow Time so I guess her fun memories are same but different - I just have to work a bit harder to make them happen. I'm now already scheming to get her and some of her friends up to Star of the Sea for some fun on that waterslide....).

Linking with #FriendshipFriday #WordlessWednesday #BlueMonday 


  1. You make a good point about childhood memories. Our oldest and youngest daughters are only about 4 years apart in age, but the younger was only a year old when we moved from New Jersey to Texas. After less than two years we moved to New Orleans and remained there for 5 years. The two girls not only have different memories of time and place, but also developed different regional accents.

    1. Oh wow. That is interesting. But of course. That makes sense, as their classmates and immersion in language would be quite different...

  2. That's a thing about life, it's all about experiences, I wish I could share some of the things I've done with my children but can't go back in time.

  3. Your photo says life is a beach. I can feel the sun and heat.

  4. Dear Lydia, I experienced this myself because I am much younger than my brother. He was born in 1948, I in 1961. When my brother was little, my parents didn't have much money, but they were young and adventurous. I often heard their stories about traveling by motorbike with a sidecar and vacationing in a tent and I was a bit jealous of my brother because my parents raved about those vacations and this adventurous time. When I was born, my parents already had a car and bought a trailer and my brother only came with them in the early days until he was 17 or 18. I was a much more sheltered kid than my brother, but there was also less adventure. I now know that my brother was also a little jealous of me because I "had more"... more things, more attention from my parents... but personally I would have preferred to have had the adventures. Definitely we BOTH had a good childhood, each in our own way. I think you'll be burdening your youngest with good memories too - it'll just be OTHERS...
    All the best and a good start into the new week, Traude

  5. You are so right. I never thought of this before. It explains a lot of why siblings have different opinions of their upraising.

  6. Yes, it just took me by surprise to discover it...

  7. Hi Lydia - I've found the memory thing to be really interesting too - when we get together with our adult kids (who are in their 30's) they often mention things that I have no memory of at all. They also remember vactions differently and family interactions differently. I guess we all process information individually and nothing is exactly the same - especially when viewed through the eyes of a child vs the eyes of an adult. I keep going back to the fact that we did the best we could - and our kids turned out to be great humans - so hopefully we didn't scar any of their memories too badly! :D And it's never too late to create new ones like you plan to do.

  8. This was so interesting Lydia and I agree, even a few years between kids makes such a difference to memories. Our youngest was only 3 when we moved to live in England for a year and hasn't got that many memories but likes to look at herself as a child over there to see if she can remember. My other two have lots of memories being that bit older. Another example is that my daughters are now toilet training their own toddlers and I find it hard to remember doing that with them, it just seems to have happened back in the day yet I can remember other things very clearly. Hearing them talk of what they used to do as kids is always enlightening, seeing their perspective of things.

  9. Thank you so much for sharing sharing your links with us at #270 SSPS Linky. Our kids were a only ±2½ years apart and were great friends as kids and even now as grown ups. I can imagine when having kids not born that close in years that the last one may be basically a single child.

  10. Great post. I recall JUST about everything and so does Dad, my brother not so much even though we are only 3 years apart. That set of apartments is "top of the range" and I remember them being built. Our grandkids admit to us that the first 5 of 8 remember our place in Sydney and how lucky they were to be cared for by us, and all that...and then they mention with sadness " Oh. E and E & M don't have that memory" we are making new ones here for them now. Thank YOU so much for sharing your post for Wednesday’s Words and Pics. I appreciate your presence as part of the community! Denyse.

  11. Ah yes, this is so true. And as the dynamics shift, so do the emphasis on certain memories. Here's to making lots of magic for the big and little ones to treasure. Thank you for joining us for the #DreamTeam xx

  12. With sisters 10 and 7 years older and one 8 years younger I know of which you write. Beautiful beach.

  13. Very wise words. I love reminiscing about family memories and use photos to remind the kids what we've done together. It is interesting seeing what aspects of our shared history they remember. Thanks for linking up with #DreamTeam