But I write to remember.
Remember stories. Remember people. Remember life.
It is an odd thing to be so crystal clear in some things and terribly faded in others.
To remember and be so sure. To sort of remember and be sort of sure? And to not remember and realize it full force.
It makes you hold onto the things you can see with a fierce grip and intent. Like little treasures that you refuse to release. Or a sacred and beautiful cupful of “I remember’s…”
Like my wedding day…
The smell of calla lilies in my bouquet. The tears in his eyes when he said, “In sickness and in health.” The touch of his hand the moment it was officially “mine.” The ride to our reception with my hair whipping past my face. The rat’s nest it hilariously became. And the sweet and sacred words of my best friend wishing us well.
Like my babies…
The very second I kissed Grace for the first time. The warmth, the mama love I felt. Marveling as I memorized her little face. Stroking her coal black hair that would later give way to platinum blonde.
The angry cries of my son upon delivery. His intent eyes. His severe lack of hair. His overabundance of charm. And the sweet way his Daddy cradled him in those first few hours.
The super cuteness of Sophie’s button nose. The tender way she held my finger every time she nursed. The little rash that made her look like she had the chicken pox. And the chaos that ensued the night we thought a little dinner in a hospital room with 3 children four and under would be magical…and it was not.
And then there are the other days…
Some good, some bad. Some easy, some difficult. Some light, some heavy.
Watching my baby sister walk across the stage to get her diploma, knowing she would always be my favorite student. Hearing that kids I loved had been lost to suicide or accidents or illness. Or finally walking into an inner city classroom and falling IN LOVE.
But then the pictures get murky…
Like looking through the ripples in the water when a stone has been thrown into its depth.
So I write what I can see.
Little snippets. Little stories. Little windows into my true self.
Written for kiddos and grandbabies and friends that my mind might leave behind.
Perhaps I am more aware of these sacred ripples because this is the time of year when we remember a great many things—we celebrate kindergarten shenanigans, second grade hilarity, high school graduations—we place flowers by the graveside, fly flags, honor lives—we recognize stroke victims, survivors and the families who love them.
Perhaps I am also a little more sentimental because the things I don’t remember are beginning to balance out the things I do in my sweet babies’ lives. Maybe I worry or wonder what I will miss of this baby, the one I carry now. Or maybe I simply understand that I am right around the corner from having more years with them that are murky than are crystal clear.
But hey, I’m here today and I can write and I can tell all my loves now in my own voice just how precious they are to me today.
And I can say this…
Take a moment this month to love on a stroke survivor or the families who have loved and lost someone to a stroke.
Recognize that it is an everyday battle for those who survive, that there is a sense of constant grief and loss over the person you used to be but that there is an unimaginable strength in the fight for recovery. Pray for the families who love them—the kids, the husbands, the wives, the moms and the dads that gently encourage, lift and support them—who so spectacularly create normalcy in a place that is anything but. But more than anything….
MAKE MEMORIES TODAY AND EVERY DAY.
They are precious and beautiful and a part of God’s grace.
Drink them in, soak them up and then go make some more.
For me. For them. And for all who wish they could remember.