My mother worked in a hospital. Near her section was an elevator which was a straight shot upstairs to the pediatric center. They had a Nintendo, so I liked going up there. As it was simple to do, and I had been led there many times before, I was allowed to do this without supervision. One day, after asking if I could, I went to that floor. On the way, in the elevator, was an elderly woman. I smiled, genuinely happy because I was going to be able to play video games. She retracted from my entrance, genuinely upset, and guarded herself. I had no idea what to think of it, so I just went about my way. This is one of my earliest memories.
The majority of these events I considered isolated. I never spoke with my parents about them even to this day. As such, I built my own context to all of these events. Whenever my presence has set someone on edge I try to understand why. I try to look to my past experiences and find similarities between them all as to why people are uncomfortable around me. I always find my way to this memory because it is one of my first. Not just my first in this topic, but one of my earliest memories period. In this, I learned that some people were simply uncomfortable around me.
I know that the nature of memory is unreliable. Whenever we remember something, right or wrong, it is reinforced in how we view it. It is possible I remember incorrectly, conflate details or emotions, or simply made it up. I am bearing this in mind and sharing as honestly as I can.
Consider if you will, the effect such an instance has on a young mind?
I make it a point to always smile and interact positively with children. This event is the reason. I have, and will, always expect at least one person in every group to display some aversion to me. I hope that, in following generations, no child ever thinks less of themselves due to me.