Friday, June 11, 2010

I Remember...

More from Mom's "Recollections"

"I remember when Grandpa died and I smiled at people as they went in to pay respects to someone in the downstairs bedroom--was it Nana? I'm not sure, but I know it seemed important for me to smile and be happy because everyone looked so sad!"

May we all be beacons of happiness today for those in our midst who are sad!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Memories from Attee

I've not had the creative urge to blog much these past few months, but I don't want to just let it go unattended either. Therefore, I've decided to resurrect some of Mom's writings that I have found as we've gone through her things this past year and put them out there for whatever readers I may still have left to enjoy.

I'm not exactly sure the nature of these writings. I suppose she wanted to write things down "for posterity," so that he stories and memories would live on even when she had moved on. There is a yellow legal pad with memories jotted down and dated in the mid- to late-70's, then another notebook that is entitled "My Journal about Hunter" begun in June of 1992, right about the time we found out he was HIV+. That one is a treasure, and I hope to share it in its full form at some point.

I should have posted this one on Tuesday of this week, which would have been Mom & Dad's 60th wedding anniversary, but I had forgotten about this particular entry. The entry is dated 9/6/79, just a few weeks before my sister Calli married her first husband Steve. Since Mom did not title it, I'll do that for her.

How Well I Remember

"How well I remember the day I married Tommy. As usual at 628, there was lots of confusion and much coming and going. That morning a friend brought a box filled with freshly cut gardenias from her garden and said, with a smile, "Happy the bride the sun shines on!" and it was indeed a glorious summer day! I remember th eneed to get away from all the confusion, so I went across the Janye's to rest, but instead of resting, I had a good cry and a heart-to-heart talk with Janye. Only then did she tell me Med had always hoped I'd marry Mem! But then she reassured me and said it was natural to get nervous at the last minute.

"Then as I was dressing to go to the church, I got sick at my stomach just before putting on my wedding gown. But I finally got myself together and with my daddy's help I made it down the aisle. Everyone said the way that Tommy looked at me as I came down the aisle was all the decoration that we needed for the wedding! I've always wished someone had snapped a picture because that would have been so special to keep."

It always troubled me that Mom and Dad's wedding day was so stressful for her. Since her death, I've read some of the letters that she and Dad exchanged in the months leading up to the wedding (which she, by the way, intentionally kept, but also intentionally kept FROM me until "the day she died," as she used to say), and there's no doubt that the love and certainty were there, but I guess as was often the case with Mom, her nervousness outweighed any other emotions that might have been present as well. I know their life together, while filled with ups and downs, was good, and that she had little, if any, regrets about the path their life together took for those fifty-nine years.

As Joel and I approach our 20th anniversary in less than two weeks (June 23rd), I wonder what our lives will look like when the year 2050 rolls around. If we are still on this earth, I will be 84 and he will be 81, very close to Mom's age when she died, and Dad's age now. What hardships will we have endured by then? What celebrations will we have shared together? Will our boys rest in the knowledge that I had little, if any, regrets about the path our life together took?

On these summer days that seem so very full for me, I hope to keep my wits about me and remember that it's no so much about the destination, but about the journey along the way. I'm a pretty good trip planner, but I'm not so sure how good I am as a traveling companion. I think perhaps I'll work on that a bit in the days and weeks ahead...