Credit: John Paschal/JPI, Brian Lowe/JPI, ABC, CBS

Think of this collection of images as your own personal “the way they were.”

After a while, it’s easy, right? You totally forget that your favorite stars ever played parts other than the ones for which we know and love them. But just like you and us, oh yes, they have a past.

And in the photo gallery that you’ll find at the bottom of this post, you can repeat their histories — whether or not you were aware of them in the first place — with a series of pictures of 10 soap MVPs in the roles that led them to… well, where they are. On our screens and in our hearts.

More: Stars’ forgotten — and forgettable? — daytime debuts [PHOTOS]

Among them are a General Hospital icon who had to learn the hard way that love wasn’t just a splendored thing, a Days of Our Lives legend whose castmate was truly “super,” a Young & Restless heavy whose career was once a literal battlefield, and a Bold & Beautiful playboy who once came thisclose to redefining heaven with his own harem of angels.

Wanna see who they are — and, more importantly, the eye-popping images of them so long ago that you’ll be like, “Wait, is that really… ?!?”

Spoiler alert: Yes. Yes, it is really.

To do the time warp, just step into the wayback machine by clicking on the photo gallery below. Then hit the comments with the names of the actors whose pasts you’d like us to unearth next. (Because you know we will; we have the shovel at the ready!)