the importance of memories at nautilus teachings

the last two nights
for a few hours,
our grandson
was here
with us
alone…
it’s a beautiful thing
being a grandparent
and it’s been a long time
for us,
since our first
grandson
is now 11…
d and i spent a few minutes
going back over old photos
of our first grandson
right after
Ryland left…
that led to old
family photos of
numerous happy times
with us saying things like
‘look how young we were…’
‘look at all my hair…’
‘omg, do you remember that?’
nostalgia warms us.
it’s as if for small
unexpected moments
God cracks open
the gates to heaven
and lets the
warm, healing balm
of memory
flood our entirety
with colors, scents and feelings
of times we never thought
would end…
most of us have favorite
photographs on our desks
hanging on our walls
and nowadays
stored on our phone
peering at us
when we dare
pause our lives
glance toward them
and remember…
my favorite photo
of my mom
is in her silver ‘bomb’
convertible with red leather interior..


but you cannot see the colors
as the photo is from the 60’s
and resembles an ansel adams
bleak photograph
with bare tree limbs
for the background
and mom
with her long sleeves
and sunglasses on…
ragtops
were her happy place
her escape from life
and her favorite
form of travel…
i remember so many
road trips with her,
top down
wind in our hair,
music crooning…
this is my memory
of her
i hold most close.
there are a million
tiny other ones
but this one
is top
because
while we rode
she talked
laughed
cried
and told me
everything she was
thinking about
her dreams
and passion
while i just sat there
soaking it all in
wondering to myself
if i could ever be
as beautiful
kind and loving
and her…
life passes by quickly
my favorite memory
with my 31 year old son
are of football.
i loved watching him play
listening to him talk about it
i can still see him in his
jersey…


but now it’s him
holding his son…
my middle daughter
who is 27 this year
i always see her soft freckles
long hair
that she always wanted
‘mommy can you french braid my hair…’
and remember her always
wearing dresses and fancy shoes,
even when all her friends
were in shorts and t-shirts!
the baby, who is 24 this year…
blanket and toes!
she loved for me to hold
her toes and rub her feet
til she was almost 11…
and even today
she has a blanket you cannot
touch or wash because
in her words,
‘i know its disgusting, but
it holds all my tears,
my funny stories
my life, mom…you cannot wash it~’
what do you cling to?
what are you afraid to let go of?
is there anything you
are looking forward to?
i sit and stare
at Ry
when he is asleep
in his tiny chair
that vibrates…
i memorize his long
fingers,
his blue eyes
and sweet smile…
sometimes when he is asleep
he wakes up
looks at me
and we both smile
before he nods back off…
i think to myself,
‘he’s checking to make sure
ole’ granny is still there!’
i don’t know what or if
my children have a favorite
memory of me yet
or for that matter
if d does…


what legacy do you wish
to leave behind?
i have spent the past year
sharing with my kids
my life story.
i wanted them to know
where i came from
what made me who i was
why i divorced twice
and most important
how i found out who
sheri was at the age
of 50
and the journey
which brought me to
full acceptance and forgiveness..
we don’t know
when God is going to call us home
and most of us take advantage
the miracle that we
get to wake up every day
and say i’m sorry,
apply for that job we so want,
paint that wall,
fix the car,
play with the kids
or love our spouse…
take a deep breath in
and exhale,
then begin this moment
appreciating your
one beautiful life.
i will do anything for our kids
and grandchildren
including change my life
if need be
because this is my now
my happy place…
and my favorite memory
with our 11 year old
grandson Tanner?
riding in my 350Z
silver convertible
when he was almost 5.
he looked over at me
smiled and said,
‘granny, play our song!’
so i hit taylor swift
picked her song, “mean”
cranked up the volume
hit the gas
took his hand
and together
we drove to publix
singing at the top
of our lungs,
and laughing…
today is a good day
to make a memory,
i dare you…