Do you ever find yourself remembering what you were like as a kid? Playing with your friends from morning till evening, finding magic in the mundane things of everyday life and not having a single care in the world—those were the days, right? Dear childhood memories hold a very special place in our hearts and most of us have at least one funny memory to share.

Author Lilah Sturges from Austin, Texas raised this question on Twitter: "What’s a story that encapsulates who you were as a young person?" and 3.5K brave souls shared their thoughts. From starting fights with other kids just so you could have some quality reading time or packing up your entire rock collection for a family trip, these stories have a lot to say about your character.

Scroll down below to read some amusing memories from the thread, upvote your favorites, and don't forget to share your defining moments in the comments!

Image credits: LilahSturges

#1

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

lingerie_addict Report

Chancey
Community Member
4 days ago

This is perfect!

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Lilah Sturges, an author of numerous comic books, short stories and novels, started the thread by sharing her own memory of how she decided to run for class president at the age of 14. "The first line of my campaign speech was: 'As you all know, I am a genius.' I received exactly one vote, my own." According to her, this story paints the perfect picture of what was she like when she was younger.

It's only natural to think more about the past when we're growing older. But even though we experience countless new things as children, we only recall a few of them as adults. Whether it's the first time you're riding a bike or a significant event like the birth of a sibling, such memories can tell a lot about your youth surroundings and how they influenced your personality.

#2

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

CydneyDaemon Report

Yara Balabanova
Community Member
4 days ago

He was probably brought up with those values, very sad

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Bored Panda reached out to Dr. Eric Maisel, a retired California licensed psychotherapist and active creativity coach who is also the author of Redesign Your Mind and more than 50+ other books. He was kind enough to give us some insights into childhood creativity. According to Dr. Maisel, as a general rule, people were more creative and honest as children.

"The process of socialization and schooling, where you are supposed to learn facts for the tests and draw inside the lines, starts to rob of us our imagination and causes us to become less creative over time, unless we actively rebel and actively fight to retain our individuality and creativity."

If you wish to rejuvenate your creativity, Dr. Maisel suggested that you could do it by demanding of yourself that you are the arbiter of meaning in life, that you get to live your life purposes, and that you will speak in your own voice, even if that feels risky. "Self-censorship is the big creative blocker, and demanding that we don’t over-censor ourselves is the key to creating," the coach explained.

According to him, we often look back on our childhood because it was simple. "We fell in love purely back then, with the book we were reading at the age of seven, with the movie we saw in a hushed, darkened movie theater when we were nine, with that ballet performance we saw when we were eleven. We fell in love in a deeper way than most adults will ever fall in love again. So, we pine for that and want to go back there to re-experience that."

#3

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

_BenMonroe_ Report

ShriSha Kamboj
Community Member
4 days ago

this is just so tempting now.......only if it were like that here

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#4

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

Antibloviator Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
4 days ago

I'm not particularly religious, but if a pastor tells a 7-year-old they don't belong because of their questions about God, I don't think that person deserves to be a pastor.

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We also had the pleasure to talk to Dr. Louisa Penfold and discuss the relationship we have with our inner child. She is a visual art and early childhood specialist currently working as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Dr. Penfold is also the author of Art Play Children Learning where she shares ideas on how parents can integrate contemporary art into children’s lives.

According to her experience, many children are extremely curious and creative. "Every kid is so unique, with their own interests and quirks. Toddlers, in particular, are going through a stage of rapid biological and social development. They are constructing their own identities and observations of the world," she explained. "They are also still coming to understand what is appropriate and not appropriate social behavior. This often results in behavior that is both overly and hilariously honest."

As people get older, they start to understand social queues in a clearer way: "So adults can still be honest and creative, but engage in these behaviors with more social understandings." Moreover, since grown-ups come from different experiences with new values and morals, "it is interesting to look back on behavior from childhood as a point of comparison to where we are now," she continued.

#5

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

fakepalles Report

ShriSha Kamboj
Community Member
4 days ago

wow that is like so cool

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#6

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

Meganfangirl Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
4 days ago

I appreciate you, kid! Students like you were the only way some of us got decent sex ed.

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"Also, many of us have had transformative childhood experiences like an amazing teacher, or a family vacation, or a fortuitous event that then shaped our interests and opportunities as adults. Reflecting on our individual journey - who we are and where we have come from - is important in owning our power as adults."

Even though we might feel overwhelmed with the burdens of our everyday lives and start to see life as busy and tiring, Dr. Penfold leaves us with a few pieces of advice on how to retain this sense of freedom. "My advice is for adults to carve out time for play where you can let your mind wander and make new connections. Activities like cooking, sewing, gardening, hiking, and art allow folks to get out of their heads and into a creative space. These experiences are so important for cultivating that feeling of freedom and creativity."

#7

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

GeneraZ Report

Otter
Community Member
3 days ago (edited)

I could read at age 4 or 5, and holy crap were the first couple of grades of school ever dull for me! I ran through "Fun With D**k And Jane" during the very first reading class, when everyone else was struggling with "fun...", and there was absolutely nothing else to read.

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#8

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

dragontologist Report

Otter
Community Member
3 days ago

Clever adult there!

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Most people can't recall the first two or three years of life but we all have that first memory that sticks with us for years. According to Krystine Batcho, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist, "What types of events persist into adult memory may well reflect characteristics of our childhood, as well representing what is integral to what matters to us." Although it's not yet clear why some experiences are so vivid that we remember them our whole lives while others fade from our memories.

However, if you think about it, many things that we remember are often related to emotions. "Certainly injuries, such as a playground accident resulting in a broken arm, often persist in adult memory. But also memorable are happy occasions such as an especially enjoyable holiday or time playing with friends on an outing," Batcho explained.

#9

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

_hex_libris_ Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
4 days ago

If you were 3, that's on your adults, not you. I'm impressed you were able to pack anything at all. Still hilarious.

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And these memories do not only tell the story of who we were earlier in life but also of who we have become. Spending more time to reflect can help you get a broader understanding of how your character got shaped. "The childhood memories we choose to hold on to reveal aspects of what we consider important", she said. "How that individual understands the meaning of those experiences contributes to their sense of self."

#10

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

mckeelearning Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
4 days ago

Doesn't surprise me that this 8-year-old became a doctor. Well done!

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#11

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

StephenSuthes Report

Laugh or not
Community Member
4 days ago

I did mine on the Silmarillion, with a book of Tolkien's drawings.

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Another interesting thing to reflect on is how the world has shaped us. The stories in this list tell a lot about creativity, honesty, and the general freedom we had as kids. A creativity test conducted by NASA analyzed if we remain creative over the years of getting "educated". From the 1.6K 4- and 5-year-olds surveyed, a shocking 98 percent scored at "creative genius" level.

#12

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

HelenaHurry Report

Rick
Community Member
3 days ago

I once saw my mom buy a present and she told me it was a Christmas present for my cousin and I nodded along, secretly smiling and excited because of COURSE the present was for me, I’d mentioned I would have liked it and circled it in the Christmas catalogue. Guess who was disappointed and confused at lack of said present on Christmas Day and whose mom looked perplexed and said “but I TOLD you that wasn’t for you”!

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The research shows that the older we get, the less creative we become: "Five years later, only 30 percent of the same group of children scored at the same level, and again, five years later, only 12 percent. When the same test was administered to adults, it was found that only two percent scored at this genius level."

#13

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

EyeceKnits Report

S.
Community Member
3 days ago (edited)

This person is incredibly smart! Woah. Won't be surprised if they were a lawyer.

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#14

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

hereforthepi Report

ShriSha Kamboj
Community Member
4 days ago

and here I was at 8 crying how tooth fairy was real

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The researchers found out that there are two main kinds of thinking: divergent and convergent. The former is also known as imagination, the ability to think of new ideas and possibilities. We use the latter when we are making decisions, judgments, or evaluations. In other words, “As we learn to excel at convergent thinking—or the ability to focus and hone our thoughts—we squash our instinct for divergent or generative thought.“

#15

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

strategistmag Report

Julieandthephatones
Community Member
3 days ago

8 or 9!!!!! wow i wish i could've done something like that at that age!

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But even if the education system took away our creativity, there are ways to rediscover that inner 5-year-old. Apart from the obvious mood boosters like family movies or cheerful music, you should also consider daydreaming. Kids are naturals when it comes to letting the mind wander. So if you're dealing with a task that requires some creative thinking, allow yourself to zone out.

#16

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

JayHulmePoet Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
4 days ago

I appreciate this public warning to never elect Jay Hulme into any leadership position.

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#17

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

KursedYvan Report

Otter
Community Member
3 days ago

That was the age when I learned the Elvish alphabet instead of doing my homework.

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#18

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

anothertransman Report

me
Community Member
4 days ago

You will survive the zombie apocalypse. They are all your friends now for real!

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Another thing would be spending time with actual kids. Seeing the way they think of whole imaginary worlds or think of new games on the spot could encourage and inspire you. Lastly, one thing to accelerate divergent thinking is to pretend to live in a perfect world where nothing bad happens. Imagining the best-case scenario will lead to being more innovative instead of feeling the weight of anxiety and stress most people tend to feel every day.

#19

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

Hebrewlit Report

Julia Atkinson
Community Member
3 days ago

Ah, memories! Back in the 60s and 70s it seems to have been compulsory for schools to use Izal toilet paper

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#20

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

JaySixOfEarth2 Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
4 days ago

It only makes it better that this person is named "Jay."

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#21

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

mxalicai Report

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
4 days ago

Didn't know that you need to save time in kindergarten. Unless of course you needed to cover "Introduction to bookkeeping and accounting" before nap time.

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Of course, we should keep in mind that life was simpler when we were children. Most people did not have any serious responsibilities or worries. But it’s natural to sometimes wish to be a child again and as research shows, it could be beneficial.

#22

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

PeopleAdjacent Report

Demi Zwaan
Community Member
3 days ago

I love that! I'm going to use that too.

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#23

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

tigresalvaje11 Report

Otter
Community Member
3 days ago (edited)

At 8 years old, my mother taught me to sew, because she didn't want to spend money on new clothes from stores for me, and she was tired of sewing my clothes herself. I sucked at it because I was eight, but she refused to let me have any clothes unless I sewed them myself, and it's a damn shame I never tried using my skills on a dead lizard.

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#24

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

LeighMontville Report

Guy MacGregor
Community Member
3 days ago

What does "breaking wind" means? Find nothing on Google but a Twilight parody film...

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#25

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

ItsMeYorkie Report

Brunettechameleon
Community Member
4 days ago

That is some very logical thinking

#26

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

ctjr05 Report

Calyfan Yelood
Community Member
3 days ago

haha this is hilarious! You'd be a great events planner!

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#27

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

erbridge Report

De Gueb
Community Member
3 days ago

I was coerced my many teachers in my religious school to dress properly and cut my hair. When I pointed out the the guy on the cross had long hair, a beard and was dressed with an rag covering his modesty they didn't like it. But they can't argue that one.

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#28

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

hockeydoc_21 Report

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
4 days ago

Except that it is. You just argue with a toddler because it's funny how they make a fool of themselves. It's a bit like watching a political debat and betting who comes out as the biggest idiot.

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#29

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

gothspiderbitch Report

Samantha Lomb
Community Member
3 days ago

Death is a fact of life. No idea why a parent thinks shielding a kid from a fictional death is helpful

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#30

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

SOlzawski Report

WilvanderHeijden
Community Member
4 days ago

Headline should read: School officials exposed as perverts.

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#31

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

Vjinxvalentine Report

buttonpusher
Community Member
3 days ago

Hope it made a "cha-ching!" noise on the way out.

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#32

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

zoobertdoo Report

Busy Panda
Community Member
3 days ago

As a former bookworm I can relate to this...

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#33

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

thelurkinglark Report

rspanther
Community Member
3 days ago

When life imitates art.

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#34

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

HeyChelseaTroy Report

Peter Bear
Community Member
3 days ago

Don't do as I do, do as I say. Worst teaching method ever.

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#35

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

MichaelHeide Report

WildBerry
Community Member
4 days ago

Begs the question: An exorcism on a barn animal or a person?

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#36

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

Deneholm Report

SPQRBob
Community Member
3 days ago (edited)

Ah, yes. The days when teachers could whip/spank the students. Only the boys, though. Probably because they feared the strong possibility of their own inappropriate.... (*ahem*) physical reaction had they done so to girls. Or alternately, they feared the girls' fathers' entirely appropriate physical response should they have done so.

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#37

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

JoshCrewsReally Report

TheReader19
Community Member
3 days ago

Thumbs up for you mate 👍👍

#38

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

6502_ftw Report

Artoonist Corine
Community Member
3 days ago

My son who was 5 at the time called 9-1-1 from the school phone in the wrestling room. His reasoning, "to make sure it worked in case of emergency".

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#39

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

TheAlphaBetty Report

Jayne Kyra
Community Member
3 days ago

"Snape!" ejaculated Slughorn, who looked the most shaken, pale and sweating. "Snape! I taught him! I thought I knew him!"

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#40

People-Sharing-Stories-That-Describe-Them-As-Kids

Sideways440 Report

Julia Atkinson
Community Member
3 days ago

Writing prompt for Stephen King

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Note: this post originally had 50 images. It’s been shortened to the top 40 images based on user votes.