The broken baby brush
This particular memory was of something important to me. I was able to give it an approximate date because it contained a reference that would force it to be within a particular time period.
I have a younger brother, who was born less than a year and a half after me. When the incident occurred, he was a baby who couldn't do much except lay there and wave his arms and legs and grab at stuff.
On this particular day, my mother was cleaning the house, and she moved the crib around as she cleaned so that she could keep an eye on the baby. She had moved the crib to a very small room with lots of openings (we later determined that the only room this could be was a short hallway with bedrooms on either side, a bathroom at one end, and an opening to the dining room at the other end). The baby kept fussing and my mother kept putting things in his crib for him to find. He would eventually come across them and grab them and then be surprised and distracted for a while. He would lose interest fairly quickly, though, and wave his arms and legs again and fling whatever he was holding out of the crib.
My mother was running out of things to give him and she finally gave him his little baby hair brush (we each had a comb and brush set, but in different colors; his was blue and mine was yellow). He found the brush and was distracted for a while, and then flung it out with great force. It hit the floor and the handle broke off.
I worried and worried about it. I wanted it to be fixed. My mother told me that it wasn't the type of material that could really be glued, and that even if it could be glued, it wouldn't be like new, you could still see where it had been broken. She put the pieces together to show me. She said that she would have to go to town and buy him a new one. I didn't want a new one, though, because it wouldn't be the same. It wouldn't really be his brush. My mother said, "He's too young! He doesn't care!"
I already knew that, though. I knew he didn't care right now. He was just a little baby and didn't know what he was doing. I said, "But when he gets older, and does know, he won't have his brush, because he broke it when he was a baby."
It seemed terribly tragic and I didn't know how to fix it.