In our old home and when I was still a boy, I would silently lay claim to my sister's room after she had left. My mother said and did nothing as she noticed more that I would read my books there with the door closed, a clock radio beside me on the mattress topper, the memory of my time there so suffused with how little I had wanted of anything else, the company of my school friends, my parent's expectations upon me the closer to the end of another school year it became. I preferred that room not because it was on the ground floor of the house so that the sunlight through the low windows was scant. I preferred it for no reason other than knowing that it was not my room, but without so much a breach as to make my mother and father tell me I was doing something wrong. I honestly could not tell you properly why I started using it as my own.

I kept an old CRT TV hidden beneath the bed frame along with some gaming consoles. I found it in the garage the previous summer, no bigger than 13 inches so that it was quite easy to leave obscured behind several boxes. At night when my parents went to bed I would drag the heavy thing — visible from deep within only by a small green dot — from its too-short cord and place it atop the mattress. I'd play games on my Playstation for hours while forgoing sleep, doors locked, room lights off, volume low.

There is something about the way you remember things that becomes incommunicable, I realize, the older you get. Memories so often morph for me this way, depending on how long it has been, to become in the end as remote, colorless, flat. There comes with that a certain kind of longing.

I find that people tend to recall these periods of their lives with a sense of benumbing, whether by virtue of adolescence, a knowingness of things to come that we cannot brace for as to avoid having lived them altogether. But I prefer to see them, these memories as drawn apart when we view them in our current personhood, as being with a new form, shaped by time, by distance, of knowing indeed what is to come. Of knowing that even a continual and fluvial awareness of the present will soon flatten, and always will, until the end of time.

Less abstractly, I can remember my childhood for what it was. I realized as I got older how much I was chasing a conception of a life I both yearned for and rejected — the quiet aching of an all-apparent loneliness, the comfort of one's own solitude.