How much do I really remember?

I remember a lot of things from when I was a kid, but I’m not sure how many of them are real.

A lot of my earliest “memories” are moments that I may have been told about and that definitely have photographic evidence. So I don’t know if I really remember them or if my brain has just created those memories based on what I’ve seen in pictures or been told about.

I can be slightly more certain when I remember things that no one told me about or don’t have pictures.

For example, I think I remember my second birthday. I remember sitting in my high chair eating a peanut butter muffin and I remember getting a little basketball goal. The basketball goal was raised up as high as it would go but I could still reach on tip-toe to drop the ball in.

But there are pictures of both of the things above so I’m not sure my memory is really.

On the other hand, I also have a memory of being in our house with lots of people around that I think is the day of my birthday party.

I remember a day at the beach when I was 3 and I was playing in a tidepool in my Superman underoos. There was a small outcropping that looked like a chair and I was pretending it was my throne.

There’s also something strange about the quality, the texture of the memories I’m more sure about. They seem fuzzy and indistinct, like I’m viewing the scene through bad lighting.

When I was in preschool one of my teacher’s, a woman named Sarah babysat me once. I think I was 3 or 4 and she took me to the mall and bought me a chocolate chip milkshake. I remember there being some confusion about the difference between a chocolate milkshake and a vanilla milkshake with chocolate chips in it.

There’s a lot of interesting research about how memories are formed in children at different ages. Younger children tend to rely more on visual memory until their language skills catch up.

Most research shows that most memories before age 4 are lost. But there is some evidence that people can retain memories from around age 2.