It’s The Little Things

I’m about four years old.  My dad and I are sitting outside on a summer evening at dusk.  I’m wearing little white pajamas with tiny yellow flowers and green leaves on them.  My dad asks  me what I would like to talk about, and I, trying frantically to come up with something to make this time last longer, answer that I would like to talk about frogs.

I’m outside on a sunny summer day looking out over the fields on our farm and am awestruck by the beauty of the field of flax covered with blue flowers.

My friend, Lori, and I are driving through the Rocky Mountains.  We stop at The Blackforest Inn, and I order trout almondine.  It tastes divine.

I fly into a small airport outside of a small town in Alabama.  I am there for my sister’s graduation from Army basic training.  It’s the middle of the night,  I’m alone, and I have no idea where I will spend the night. A kind family approaches me and asks if I would like to share a taxi ride into town and stay at the same hotel they are staying at.

My husband and I, married for just a short time, get caught in the rain while out for an evening walk.  We laugh and,  like children, just enjoy the feeling of the rain on our faces.

I leave two of my children at a new baby-sitter when I go to work, and my son, probably not quite two at the time, cries and doesn’t want to stay.  I have to leave, but when I run some work errands about an hour later, I drive by the baby-sitter’s house and see his sister, two years older than him, holding his hand outside as they watch the baby-sitter’s children play.

My two oldest children, just two and four years old at the time, are with me in Ramsey Park near the waterfall.  We sit on the ground, and I tell them to shut their eyes and just listen to the sounds all around them.  Later we shuffle through the crunchy fallen leaves on the ground, and they enjoy their animal crackers in the little boxes with handles.

My youngest daughter and I are out in the garden on a late summer day.  We pick the dried beans and then sit by the picnic table and shell them.  I’m not sure if it was the same day, but we laid on our backs on the lawn and watched the cloud formations in the sky.

My sister and her son, and I and my youngest daughter are at a park on a lovely fall day.  Our kids get along so well together, and we just enjoy watching them play and visiting.

My husband has just found out that he probably does not have lung cancer, but it is likely a lung fungus that is causing his symptoms.  We are in the Muffin Man Cafe at Methodist Hospital in St. Louis Park.  The vegetable wrap and chai latte that I have that day taste better than anything I ever remember.

My friend and I are having coffee (she) and tea (me) together at a local coffee shop thoroughly enjoying our conversation as we always do when we manage to get together.  Her husband comes in to get a cup of coffee to go, and they talk briefly.  I notice the sweet and tender way they relate to each other. (It turns out to be the last time they ever see each other.  He is killed in an accident later that day.)

We are on the beach at Park Point in Duluth.  The day is sunny and warm and seeing all of my family on the beach and in the water enjoying themselves and their time together makes me feel warm and fuzzy.

I could go on and on with little flashes of memories from my life, and I know you could too.  The important point is, I think, that most of these memories are of simple, everyday things that made an impression on us.  It’s the simple pleasures we remember and cherish.  Of course, my graduation from high school and nursing school, my wedding day, the births of my children, and other important celebrations stand out for me too, but these times are often few and far between.  We need to remember that it’s the little moments everyday that make up most of the fabric of our lives, and, because of that, they turn out to be the big things.

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