Wednesday, July 20, 2011

packing memories

this is one of those posts where I want to list what I want to reflect upon before I forget it....hopefully in August I will be able to actually write...

I am sitting in the only free wi-fi spot in Western North Dakota....a coffee house named "Daily Addiction" cute name, but my chai was made from powder--powder, and then hot water poured in.   Sigh.  I guess I shouldn't expect so much when the county courthouse cafe is the best lunch spot in town, right?

Packing up my parent's house  has been a trip.   This is a house I grew up in--from third grade on.   I was sneaking around in the basement last night---I've stashed a bottle of wine in the downstairs fridge which is in the laundry room, and when I opened the door to the laundry room, it creaked.  It creaked just like it did thirty years ago when I was in high school.   It's funny how many memories a creaky door evokes---as a little kid, I would sneak to that fridge to steal Christmas cookies (o.k., I did that as an adult, too)....and then there was the summer I was dating a much older man who was working in the oil fields, and sneaking down the stairs that still creak with the same sound as the laundry room door.  Any way, I want to write more about the creaks.

And I want to write about the memories thrown into the dumpster--my barbie doll case with only Ken remaining in it; and the oil paintings I painted as a teenager, and the piano lesson music, and all of the jars my mother has saved for, oh, about 40 years, and the missing things, like the elm trees in the backyard that created so much havoc because it dropped so many twigs and my stepfather was never satisfied at how we cleaned them up, and the electric frying pan that my mom would fry liver in that I was made to eat, and I would gag it down because if I didn't it would be world war three.....

and then, how old they forgetful and tender and vulnerable they both mom and my they bicker and yet they are each other's anchors in spite of....losing their minds (literally) and being scared of this move more than they let on, and yet the ball is rolling and there is no turning back...which is good....and how I want to just wrap them up in my arms and want to tell them that I  am going to take care of them, and not to worry, but I worry too, but I will, and my sisters will take care of them, no doubt.....

Really, though, I came to do a little work on my sermon for Sunday.   So...for now, I will let all of this rest, and finish my powdery chai.

I really look forward to Starbucks on Saturday in Boston.


  1. Such a tender and yet stressful time for your mom and step-father...and for you and your sisters. I could hear the creaky door and see the dumpster...thanks for sharing.

    Deep grace and deep peace to all of you.

  2. Having done this with my MIL, who is now heading into the final weeks of life, I hold you tenderly in my prayers and love. Hard work, my friend.

  3. beautiful post -- and as I read, I thought -- "OH NO, NOT THE JARS!!! everything else but NOT THE JARS!" Peace to you and big hugs for a hard job faithfully done.