My Hopes, Memories and Dreams

Mnemonic ~ Care Bears in the Clouds

The following series of images was created by Jorge Lizalde for his project Mnemonic, based upon a post I had submitted a few months ago titled Care Bears in the Clouds.  The project aims to recreate participant’s earliest childhood memory by collating shared videos and images from the web, to recreate the  memory landscape.

Care Bears in the Clouds

One of my earliest childhood memories is of being whisked up into the arms of an older brother and taken outside into the backyard of the family home.  Here we would sit atop the timber picnic style  outdoor table and chat about anything. It didn’t matter what the topic was. Maybe my brother would point to some birds flying overhead, or we would laugh at the antics of the pet dog. Often we would look for Care Bears in the clouds.  Though the topic wasn’t important, the ritual was.  It served as a distraction you see… and I think even as a four or five year old I knew it, but it was easier just to pretend.  For somewhere inside the house, usually in the kitchen or front living room, my mother would be on the floor hysterical and unwilling or unable to pick herself up. My father and maybe another brother or two would take an arm or shoulder each, in an attempt to lift her up and escort her to her bedroom.

Somehow, someone must have been delegated the responsibility of removing me from the scene. Considering I was seven to ten years  younger than all my four brothers, I imagine they were well accustomed to the drama but had wanted to shield me from it.

My memories of these instances present in quick, sharp snapshots, like the clicking frames of a camera and usually at angles that just allow for a glimpse around the corner of the dining room wall or behind a kitchen bench, as I looked back over the shoulder of whoever was carrying me towards the back door. It was confusing and scary, but easier not to ask questions and seek out those Care Bears in the clouds instead.

19 responses

  1. You’re a survivor, Colleen. And,
    one of the good people on this earth.
    Please, don’t forget that. Hugz, UT

    October 21, 2009 at 12:14 am

  2. Thanks UT. Thanks immensely. I do know all the taxing times have given me an inner strength and resolve for which I am grateful.

    October 21, 2009 at 5:50 am

    • All I can say is…
      Pooh Bears ought
      to be tax-free.

      Trick or treat?

      October 25, 2009 at 8:53 pm

  3. blissbait

    i remember this!!!
    one of your first gorgeous posts
    he did a great job!!!

    Isn’t he amazing???? I had uber creepiness happen with my old blog and needed to shut down…but I was a bit bummed because Jorge also did one of these for me. But I’ve just walked from that identity and so I’ve not posted it. Pity. He’s an incredible artist and You’re an incredible artist….what a fantastic marraige of images.

    Thank You Both. Namaste. 🙂

    October 21, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    • Ooh Bliss…sounds like you have had an unpleasant experience. I’m so glad it didn’t stop you returning to share your unique talents. It must have taken some courage on your part I bet, so well done !

      Thanks for introducing me to Jorge. It’s been an interesting project to partake in.

      October 22, 2009 at 11:21 pm

  4. Oh, those loving care bears! There just when you needed them. Incredible series of images, too… wow, talk about stream of consciousness. I loved it… almost felt primal, subconscious. A brilliant tool for working with the Shadow.

    Thank you for this… Incredibly inspiring. Your honesty is breathtaking.

    October 22, 2009 at 2:26 am

    • Yes I loved my care bears ! Still do ! You should check out Jorge’s website Belle. Not too late to submit a script for him to work from if you’re interested.

      October 22, 2009 at 11:07 pm

  5. How loved you were then and now. Hold that close sweet girl.

    October 22, 2009 at 4:36 am

    • Thanks Sara. Your comment has actually challenged me enormously. I find it difficult to consider the memory with gratitude for my brother/s. That’s sad isn’t it ? Maybe my angle has become a bit skewed and I need to revisit the positive side of interactions with them. They just seem so few and far between. Even as an adult I have tried to reach out to a couple of them but have had minimal response. But I’ve come to accept that’s their issue…not mine. Hmmm…food for thought.

      October 22, 2009 at 11:12 pm

  6. Dear Colleen, Pam from Notes Along The Path invited me to visit you. I’m so glad she did. Your writing is beautiful. She mentioned that she could envision you writing a book that would be helpful to many. I must agree. I too had a challenging childhood with an alcoholic father and an abusive and unhappy mother. It sounds so stark when I say it here, but of course, now I see them as my greatest teachers for they taught me to choose a better way for my children and myself. They also taught me to be compassionate with those who aren’t as strong as me. I am, in the end, a very blessed person and a great deal of credit goes to my unhappy parents who made it possible for me to be an empathetic Spirit Teacher for others. I would like to invite you onto my blog roll. Peace, Sharie

    October 22, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    • Hi Sharie,

      Nice to meet you. Thanks for coming to visit and for you warm words. I know what you mean about a simple summary of who your parents were to you sounding “stark”. Maybe that’s why writing about it for me seems to be helping me to really “explain” the impact on my childhood. It’s like a process of unfolding the layers bit by bit, to reveal not only the bruises but the learnings and courage also that have encased them over the years. I will pop over to your place to have a look around.

      Thank you for adding me to your blog roll.


      October 22, 2009 at 11:17 pm

  7. spiritteacher

    Dear Colleen, I’m a lot older than you and so I’ve been through the talking, writing and getting it out stage for a long time. I did find that helpful and then one day I reached the point where I felt I had said it all and so now how do I use it for my own healing and for the healing of others? And that’s when my life transformed from being a student and a seeker to adding on teacher to my life’s purpose. At your young age, you are already teaching. As a mother of the world, let me say, I am grateful for that and very proud of you and I’m certain your mother is as well. I’m adding you today to my blog roll. Please come and visit me often. As I responded to you on my site, I will provide cookies and tea next time! Peace, Sharie

    October 23, 2009 at 1:44 pm

  8. Colleen,
    You know the writing is powerful when someone decides to make a video of the post. Keep on writing dear girl; your destiny is calling!

    October 24, 2009 at 7:48 pm

    • As always Pam, thank you for your encouragement. oxox

      October 29, 2009 at 12:55 am

  9. How fabulous that someone took what you said and merged into image! Always those first/early memories are fascinating and continuingly useful, I think, in writing of all kinds.

    October 28, 2009 at 11:42 pm

  10. blissbait

    Hey! Ack! You remind me that I should post mine from Jorge. He did an amazing job. In running at the speed of light from my old blog, I’m not sure where I put it. I’ll have to look. Thank You for posting this….both of You did such lovely art here. Straight to the heart. You brought tears to my eyes once again. Hugest Hugs to You. Thank You for All and Namaste. 🙂

    April 1, 2010 at 1:24 am

    • Shoot him an email Bliss. Maybe he could send it to you again ? Yes, I’d love to see it ! And thanks, as always for your lovely words.

      April 1, 2010 at 5:34 pm

  11. It sounds like we may have had similar childhoods. My father was a chronic alcoholic and was on the floor many times. And whatever dysfunction it is really doesn’t matter to a five year old….as long as there are clouds. I’ve always loved nature, and I still stare at the clouds even today.

    April 1, 2010 at 1:31 am

    • Scott that’s so true…that the nature of the dysfunction is not what matters to a child. Yes, there is comfort in the clouds. I still find it there…and in the stars. Thank you for commenting.

      April 1, 2010 at 5:35 pm

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