I’m holding off on Part 2 of Summer Reading to share something that hit me between the eyes today. I sat down in my favorite chair to take a break from never ending laundry from being away for a week. Sitting on my side table is a copy of Shauna Neiquist’s book, Savor. I opened it randomly as I tend to do at times. The title to the page for July 13 is “When Memories Are All We Have”.
This reading was especially poignant as I just returned from a week at the beach where my family visited for over 50 years. That place is full of so many, many memories with all members of my family and lots of friends. When I am there I especially love re-living memories of my father, mother and brother since all I have now are those memories. For those of you that are not familiar with Savor or do not have a copy, I am going to re-print it here as it’s too good not share with you.
My mom and dad and brother have grown through the years into my closest friends, the people who tell me the most searing truth, who catch me when I fall, who give me soft places to rest and present me a bright future when the only one ci can see from my vantage point is dim and breaking before my eyes. Families can go either way, and I take no credit for the way we’ve gone. I accept it like a gift or a winning lottery ticket, and I hold that ticket in my hand tightly, and I take every chance I can to be with them, for an afternoon, for a weekend, for a vacation, and every moment feels like being given one more winning ticket.
We’ve invested our vacations with as many memories as we can make, crammed them full of love and conversations and stories and long walks and meals and boat rides, because there will be a day when memories are all we have, and I want to know that we have more than we need to last us the rest of our lives.
Savor, Shauna Niequist
This has been on my mind a lot lately. I’ve been re-living many memories and stories of my family. I have been telling my boys things that I thought I’d even forgotten. And I wish I knew and remembered more. I wish I had asked more questions about backgrounds, other relatives, family stories and my parents’ and brother’s memories. I wish I had more time for a few more conversations, a little more hand holding and a lot more hugs.
I want these memories for my boys, also. I want them to look back and re-tell stories, have old memories and make so many more memories from life and life experiences. I noticed this one evening while at the beach. Two of my boys and my nephew spent an entire dinner going over old memories from when they were little and spending time with my parents. Some of those stories are priceless. I want this to continue!
Specifically, as far as this very summer goes, I want them to look back and have more from this time off than a brain full of Netflix. I am in the midst of a disagreement with the Third Son. He has the opportunity for a wonderful experience that could be quite an adventure and the perfect opportunity for new, different and fun memories. However, he doesn’t quite see it like that. I am hoping he will soon come around, otherwise, I’m holding onto the certainty that one day he will see the light and appreciate the upcoming experience. I’m sticking to my guns even if it means I have to force some form of new memories down his throat!
I know how quickly time passes these days. I have been trying much harder to be more intentional with my time. I force some family dinners and relish the conversations and those rare times the table is full. I try harder to pay attention. I work on remembering conversations or looks or hugs. With boys these things can be fleeting so I have to catch them while I can! I know that one day this house will be awfully quiet and I’ll be sitting back in my chair thinking back on these times.
I have learned that one day all we will have are our memories so it’s important to have just as many as we can create to last for the rest of our lives
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Enjoy Your Day!