Memories. Today I have been thinking about memories. God willing we do not lose our memories. There are so many that we have to share and we need to do them before it is too late.
I wrote this poem about memories in 1996
The Button Box
As I look for a shirt button
In my button box
The memories come flooding back
For in that box are buttons
In many colors and shapes
Sizes and textures
Buttons that tell the story of my life
A button from
the dress I wore
To the christening
Of my first born
A mandarin button
From the elegant bathrobe
My husband gave me
When our son was born
An extra button from the dress
I made myself to wear
To my youngest daughter’s
I hold each button in my hand
And relive the day
When the button
I didn’t expect
When I opened the box
To find memories
Memories in a button box
Memories are important. They take us back in time. They sometimes come unbidden with songs or smells or buttons. They can be good or bad, sad or happy but they belong to us. And let’s pray they will never be taken away.
There are times when I wish I lived in a bubble and the world outside didn’t matter. Inside the bubble would be love, joy, peace, calm. All the things I long for now. I should add that I am blessed to have love but I could use the others right now.
The trials that I have had in my life were mostly mine to deal with. Something that I could do something about. The trials I have now I have no control over. I can’t fix any of it. I would share the problems but since they belong to others I don’t feel comfortable doing that.
Yesterday I did have to go with my son to put his beloved dog to sleep. My pain was not only for the dog but for my son and his family. The sadness of losing a pet is heartrending. I can’t fix that pain but I was there to share his grief. That seems to be my role at the moment. I can share the pain but that is all. And I can pray.
Sometimes when I pray I just sing the song:
Jesus, Jesus, let me tell you what I know
You have given me your spirit. I love you so.
It is so much easier when it is your own problems. At least then you know that the choices are up to you for good or bad. We have all made bad choices in our lives and suffered the consequences. The world will continue on that way. Bad choices will always be made. Let us just hope that good comes in the long run.
All things to all people. An impossibility. Why do I think that I can do it? It’s because I have a family. I am a mother. Mother’s are supposed to be able to fix everything. Sure we can. Lately I have been trying. The impossible? Easy right?
I love my family more than life itself. If only I could fix everything that goes wrong. I can support, listen and love. I can be there no matter what. These are the things that I can do and I am doing them but I ache because I can’t do more.
I am a fixer. My whole life has been spent trying to fix things. I do know that not everything can be fixed. Can’t that be changed? Can’t we be allowed to do that? The answer is no. The world moves along and some things are good and some not. I can’t stop that. However, there is something that I can do. I can call upon the God that I love and trust.
“To holy people the very name of Jesus is a name to feed upon, a name to transport. His name can raise the dead and transfigure and beautify the living”. —-John Henry
Sometimes when you don’t know what to say or when things are too overwhelming you can just call his name. Over and over and over. It will be heard. It will be understood. It will be answered.
Sometimes prayer is as simple as that.
Aging brings some interesting dilemmas. Ones we don’t face until we are older. A friend of mine who is older than me has severe back pain. Today he was told that surgery for his problem is out because of his age. He is pretty healthy otherwise. I can’t imagine being told that I am too old to get help for constant pain. Something more than medicine or pain management. I’m sorry but THIS SUCKS! Medicine is reaching the point where implementing decisions based on age become the norm. If you haven’t read or seen the film ….this begins to sound like “Soylent Green.” At a certain age we will just be shuffled off to become food for others.
I do understand that resources will become more and more scarce and that there will be those who decide that the young must be saved but who gets to decide? Should we kill off an Einstein or Grandma Moses? Is experience and wisdom no longer needed?
The ethical decisions that we already have to make are way beyond the wisdom of Solomon. How will we begin to face the ones that will come in the future? How will we decide to not give birth to a child who will be at risk for Alzheimer’s? What will the ability to choose the sex, hair color and maybe even intelligence do to God’s creation. Are we taking over or will this make a better world?
I know that I have no idea and in some ways am glad that I don’t have to face that future.
Today my husband and I took a day off from church. I din’t think that either of us wanted to go to a yearly meeting. Instead I worked on my computer restoring programs while carbonite chugged away and re-installing my data.
Just waiting is something I don’t do well. I tried playing the piano to take up some time but the little finger on my right hand is in pain with arthritis (UGH – again with the aging!) I plan to get it taken care of but it hasn’t floated to the top of the list.
It is so easy to get impatient. We want to fix ourselves and we want to fix others. We want the world to be a better place. If only we could do that. As a nurse I learned the hard lesson that some things can’t be fixed. I am still impatient and still longing to try.
Life doesn’t wait on us while we sit around waiting. Each day holds moments for us to leap in and participate. Each day offers opportunities to do something. Sometimes the something may be doing nothing. We often forget that doing nothing is doing something. It is choosing to step away and just be. We move so fast in our world today that just sitting with hands folded is almost considered a sin. The time is past when people sat on the front porch in a rocking chair and just SAT.
So today, even though I am impatient for my computer to finish, I took some time to fold my hands and sit. I pushed away thoughts of getting up to clean the house or some other work. I just sat. Even though it wasn’t for long it was a time of doing something. Sitting.
Today started out ok. Just the usual, coffee, breakfast etc. My plan was to work on a computer booklet in Publisher for a dinner my husband is involved in. Lately my computer (I use a desktop as I am old and blind..HA) has been behaving strangely. I hate to use my laptop as I don’t like typing on a small keyboard. I know, I know, I could connect the keyboard to the laptop but then I would have to stick on large glasses to see the screen. Aging is aggravating! I had cataracts removed but one of them needs redoing and until then my vision is UGH!
Anyway, I kept struggling along with the twitches of the desktop but today in the middle of finishing the booklet I got the BLACK SCREEN!! Fortunately I was able to get it rebooted long enough to save the document on the web. At that point I went to talk to my husband and say some very ugly words. Being the great guy he is he said “put on your clothes were going to get you a new computer! He has long held the belief that in order to do any work you need the the right tools.
So instead of my original plan we bought a new computer (didn’t really want to spend the money but…) and he took me to lunch. Now I am waiting for Carbonite restore everything. I got Word Press up so that I didn’t have to use the lap top.
We never know how our day will be. We just have to get up and make the bed, clean ourselves up and move forward. The day will unroll one moment at the time. God’s time.
Some days are great. The weather is beautiful. It was today. Everything is going fine. It was. And then suddenly, for no reason, you are sad. I can’t explain it. Nothing happened. I am just sad.
Sometimes memories crop up and you remember people who are no longer here and sadness creeps in. That is one of the hardest things about aging. It is possible to lose people at any age but it becomes more frequent as we grow older. Every now and then the losses catch up with you and you can’t help shedding tears and thinking about them.
Two great friends are gone. One several years ago and one just two years this month. She had been my friend since we were in grade school and she wasn’t supposed to be gone before me. She knew me the longest than anyone left in my life and I miss her. I miss the connection. I miss getting to call and just laugh about the past.
This is a normal part of aging but not one that is fun. I am grateful for all those years with both of those friends and I can’t say that I’m not glad to be alive. As long as I am here and others who remember then they are not forgotten. They live on in my heart and in the hearts of others. Love matters. Love didn’t die with them. Love lives on and I don’t regret any of it.