Friday, February 22, 2008

Monday Memory: Flips and Such

Backward, turn backward
O Time in thy flight

Make me a child again,

Just for tonight!

(Elizabeth Akers Allen, 1860)

Do you ever have those days when being a grown-up is just really not fun? Those days when you have to talk to crazy people; when you have to be all serious and responsible with your teenager; when the cat and dog try to trip you everywhere you go; when you have to fold laundry, wash dishes, and feed the kids? Sometimes I just don't feel like doing it all. See this picture above? That's what I want to be doing: climbing on a rickety ladder onto a rickety swing set with my childhood friends Kim and Karen. Watching my brother Stephen flip over the bar. See that first tree in the yard--the one with the nearly horizontal trunk? Probably next we were headed over to hang out in that tree. We spent a lot of time in that tree. We weren't thinking about all the things we had to do before we could go to bed. We were mostly wondering if we should play house or baby dolls or Barbies. At the worst, we might have been wondering if Dawn McNamara was going to come and throw our Barbies in the creek again.

This is what we have to make sure of: that our children have a solid store of good memories on which to draw. That they can remember the smell of a wet day and the feel of a tree trunk on their palms. That they can look at an old photograph and almost remember the comfort of that very ordinary day.

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