Wednesday, May 26, 2010

In All The World There's Only One....


Twelve years and 14 hours ago my little Ashley made her grand entrance into the world. Jodi Picoult said it best: “I’ve only known her for 13 years. But if you took every memory, every moment, if you stretched them end to end – they’d reach forever”…and I can’t ever remember NOT having Ashley in my life! I would have liked to say that I had her name chosen for years, or it was a great-grandmother’s, or some strength name that I could direct her life’s path; actually, she was named because I heard someone say ‘actually’ and because I was so epiduralled up I thought they said, “Ashley”…and I thought that was pretty. She has always been a brainiac. She is a perfectionist almost to a fault! She hated diapers and trained herself at 14 months to NOT wear them. She has always had a fiery stare and a determination beyond no one else. Many parents utter “were you raised in a barn?” when doors are left open…well, Ashley WAS raised in a barn! She has spent many hours and made many friends (human and animal) at the ranch. She would rather wear paddock boots than high heels, she would rather clean a stall then clean her room, and she would rather spend her weekends with a 1600 pound gelding than ANY person in the world, and that I say is the way to raise a strong girl!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Bubbles


So I thought I would spend the morning greasing my shower floor (or my husband’s) Why, you ask? Well, I read an article about a man that slipped in the shower and, poof, all memory of his life was erased. That simple. Imagine starting over. All the things you ever worried about, past regrets, painful moments, disappear forever. You can begin a new, possible more positive canvas. I thought about if that happened to my husband. I could kinda mold him into the person I want him to be. I would tell him that he always worshipped me, we never fought, we lived a perfect life. AWESOME! I would probably lie a lot!!! I think about this wife in the paper. He didn’t even know she was his wife until they got home and he saw a picture of their wedding day. You know what he DID retain? He retained ONLY the rules of football! WTF! That would be my luck! The more I thought about it, the more I realized that although it would be awesome to start fresh, it would erase all that a person really is. When it boils down to it, our lives are really only our memories; our footprint on the world; our reaction to life’s events. I spent some time with my 90 year old family member this weekend. We talked for hours (don’t worry I had wine) about HIS history; even his father’s history. He talked about his father working in the gold mines in Alaska in 1907; he traveled by dog (yes, DOG) to work there; for two years, because there were no air flights. He talked about inventing the piston that is used today in cars. Oh, he talked about so many things that I felt like I hope that my kids have something exciting to talk to their kids about when they talk about me someday. What are they going to say, grandma worked out, didn’t work, drank soy?! They will need another bottle of wine for that one! That’s when I began to think about the memories that we leave behind. Will my kids ‘immortalize’ me? Maybe I should teach them the art of exaggeration to help them. The man in the paper was a wealthy man who lived an extravagant life prior to his fall. Interestingly enough, as he copes with his memory loss he sold 10 of his 13 watches because he couldn’t understand why a person needs so many. He sold 3 of his 6 cars. He wonders why he has such a big house for only 3 people. When his memory left him, apparently so did his ego. He doesn’t remember why extravagant items were necessary. He wanted nothing more than to remember the things that are really important in life: the day you met your wife, your children’s personalities, Christmas mornings. Nothing monetary mattered! I keep a little diary keepsake with funny or important events in the kids’ lives. Sometimes when I read them I don’t remember particular events having happened. I am always so glad that I wrote these things down to remind me of things that made me happy at a certain point in time. I was recently reading Ashley’s baby book and was reminded of a time when she stood up in church as yelled, “Hawny! Hawny!” during a moment of silence. How cute! How could I have forgotten that?! Truth is, we DO! We get caught up in the house, cars, bills; the short term memories that seem so strong, that we forget the special little snippets that make us smile. My husband says I have a lot of crap lying around the house. Baby clothes, old artwork from the kids, little love notes, EVERY SINGLE card my husband ever gave me (to name a few). When I see the ‘crap’ it makes me smile; it makes me remember; it makes me realize that the crap is my crap. It’s my memories; you know, just in case I slip in the shower, too!

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