Monthly Archives: June 2011

Traveling back in time…whoa! has it really been 40 years?

Let me say right now that the obvious question you will want to ask…I can’t answer right now.    But I will say it has been 40 years since I have seen my Uncle Charles.  Momma grew up in Mineral Wells, Texas.  One of those quaint army base towns that has a “crazy” past.  She met my dad when he was stationed there, and he moved her to his small home town in Alabama.  Uncle Charles moved to Weatherford, Texas. 

Nowdays when people move it is usually 100’s or 1,000’s of miles away.  Weatherford was less than 20 miles away, from Mineral Wells that is.

My day job has me travelling some during the week.  Last week I was headed to Stephenville, Texas but spent the night in Mineral Wells – stopping in Weatherford on the way.

I called Mom as I drove around the square.  For those of you who read my blog you know that Momma has dementia.  The day I called her was one of her good days.  Although we were close to 1,000 miles away I could not only see her smile as we talked I could feel her joy.  Do you remember the square?  What about this restaurant on the corner?  With Dementia or Alzheimer’s you lose your present, you don’t necessarily lose your past.  And the past was where I wanted to go.

It took Mom several minutes to find their addresses.  Charles and his wife divorced over 20 years ago.  I found his house fairly quick.  It was literally 2 minutes from where I was parked on the square.  I drove by 3 times.  Stopped once.  Couldn’t get out of the car.  I felt like Phoebe on that Friend’s episode when she finally found where her dad lived.  I left as well without knocking on the door.  I’ll call first next time.  Now that I know what the past looks like, I think I’ll have the courage to get out of the car next time.

Here are a few snapshots of downtown Weatherford.

What about when I’m gone?

We usually have some serious discussions at the dinner table.  If our kids listen to us at all we think it’s then.  DEEP discussions people, like the perils of a life without a purpose.

A few nights ago Mark really surprised me and asked the kids what will they remember about him years and years from now when he is gone.  WOW.  We were all silent for a few minutes.  He then asked just for the good, and then asked for the bad.  Sweet, honest answers came forth.

I of course jumped in and asked the same questions.  Again sweet, honest answers came forth.  If your wondering the only bad they came up with was “too strict”. (Mama rocks! proud of that one).

What a great question.  It really got me to thinking.  As a youngster I was so concerned about what other people think.  To a fault.  Years after my PaPa died Granny and I were talking about him.  She said you know he worried about you.  He said you worked so hard to please other people he was afraid you would never be happy.

I finally learned to balance pleasing others and pleasing myself, I think.  But Mark’s question puts it in a much better perspective.   What will people remember about you after your gone?  I know a few sentiments I hope will make the list:

Kind…..Joyful…..Caring…..Loyal…..Loving

Maya Angelou said it best:  “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”