Replay your best days, then share with loved ones
Are you ever in a situation when you wish you had a little video camera inside your head to record and preserve a moment? Or a whole day? Just so you can replay it at a time that you really need or want to recall the feelings you had while experiencing it?
That’s why I want you to read about a recent day I had. I want to evoke a memory in you that makes you feel better than anything else ever has.
I cannot name the feeling I had: pleasure, joy, satisfaction, gratitude, love? Pride, fullness, amazement? Restoration, healing, curiosity? Wonder, hope, completion? There are no words. Just emotion.
It was a Wednesday, my usual day to pick up Tina at school after early release. I am thankful we still have a few hours on these days to be together. But today was different.
My daughter, Colleen, let me know the night before that their beloved guinea pig, Chip, had died. Tina was upset about it and wanted to make something for his funeral that would take place that evening with her mom and dad. So, after rolling onto the playground to have her jump onto my chair with me, we got in the car and drove to a craft store in search of something.
What do you make for a deceased guinea pig? An appropriately sized coffin! My mind was filled with sadness and compassion for my daughter’s little family, but also with a touch of good humor about the whole situation!
We wound up at Michael’s in search of a box of some sort to decorate. They didn’t really have anything we liked. Tina was clutching onto her stuffed puppy, Bluey, who was about the same size and dimension of Chip. Poor Bluey, being stuffed in and out of different containers to no avail. (We also checked out the Halloween decorations while we were there for future projects.)
With Hobby Lobby nearby, we decided to roll on over in my powerchair rather than move the car again. Tina jumped back on our mode of transportation, and onward we went. We passed Old Navy, the Party Store (please, please can we just look?) and a few other stores.
Because my chair cannot hop curbs (not for lack of trying) we had to make many turnarounds and go-backs to get there. We had the biggest laugh at a ramp going nowhere but straight into another curb!
We finally made it. We searched Hobby Lobby, found the perfect-sized “coffin” box that Tina could paint and decorate and a cross that I could paint and decorate. Which we did.
They came out beautiful — covered in rainbow colors, Chip’s name (written backward — another story) and all his favorite foods painted on. The funeral would be a success.
It soon was time to drive Tina home to Mom and Dad. She immediately jumped out of the car to tell the neighbors all about the upcoming funeral and show them what she had made for Chip.
On my drive home, I basked in how a sad situation had turned into a better one. Tina has the ability to do that.
When I arrived back home, I noticed my other son’s car in the driveway. Would I be getting a visit with Lily, my lovely second granddaughter, as well? Could I be that lucky?
I rolled into the house to have my husband, Pete, shush me. Lily was in the playroom sleeping while my son, Cale, borrowed Pete’s pickup truck.
I started barely stroking the soft hair on her head. She lifted her eyes to mine, gave me a sleepy smile and fell back to sleep. If you’ve never felt a child fall asleep in your arms, you need to. Total trust and unconditional love just flow from that child through my arms and body, straight to my heart.
Later, when the day was done, everyone back in their respective homes, I reflected on my day. I got to be with both of my grown children, both of my granddaughters and was now sitting in the not-quite-done addition we were building. Hopefully, my 89-year-old mother would soon be moving in to it. Someday, when Mom is gone and my MS might cause me to live downstairs permanently, I imagine this being my room, with its cheery yellow walls.
This day was much better than most for many reasons. A real keeper. You might be able to pinpoint some of those reasons as you read this script to the video replaying in my head.
But why not turn on that video player in your own head and relive some of your best days too? I know you have some; we all do.
Don’t be afraid to share them with your loved ones before you just can’t anymore. That’s why I’m sharing this with you.
Karen McCoy lives in Talent.