Thursday, October 16, 2014
Feelings deep in my heart tugged at me to make the drive.
I’ve known for several weeks that my mother’s house in Alabama was about to sell. She died last December.
I’d just been waiting for the perfect day to make the trip.
I had to go.
I had to reminisce.
I wanted to walk through the house at least one more time.
I wanted to walk through the yard – front and back.
I wanted to see if there was any item, big or small, I might have missed – something else I just had to have.
I thought about going to the creek, which runs along a portion of the 13 acres, one last time, too. But the route I used when I was a child is all grown up now.
The same is true for what used to be a pond on the opposite portion of the property.
Thank God for memories.
My best friend and I used to spend a lot of time at that creek. There was no better place to spend a summer day, particularly with our GI Joes.
I learned to fish in that pond. But perhaps my favorite pastime there was skipping rocks across it.
As I walked around Saturday, Oct. 4, many wonderful things came to mind.
There were neighborhood football games in the front yard. They were supposed to be tag, but sometimes they got a bit rougher – all in fun, of course.
There were those close-to-home camping trips before my friends and I branched out even farther. They started in the front, moved to the back and then took to the woods.
There was the garden, which supplied us with okra, tomatoes, squash and so on.
There were the many afternoons of entertaining myself – like shooting basketball on the goal nailed to the pine tree and throwing the baseball off the concrete steps for fielding practice.
But the most special memories involve family.
Later Saturday, I returned to the old homeplace with my sisters, Vickie and Gayla.
We stood in the small house and relived special times – with smiles and a few tears, too.
We talked about the shifting around of space over the years, so we could all have our places to sleep.
For me, since I was a small child when all three of us were at home, it was hard to remember how we all functioned. But I know we got by.
My dad died when I was 10. My sisters and I talked about his funeral visitation at home, a normal thing back in the early ’70s, I was told.
They talked about how their little brother used to “bug them” all the time.
I remembered getting up early one Christmas morning, sneaking toward the living room and peeking through the door (there was no doorknob at the time) to see what Santa had delivered.
We didn’t have much, but we had what we needed.
After Daddy died, Mother found a way. She worked hard at a garment plant from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and then worked even harder at home.
That was what we talked about the most that Saturday, on likely our last trip together to the house.
We talked about our wonderful mother and the foundation she laid for us – based first and foremost on God and his word. Mother raised us in the church, and for that, we are the most thankful.
We expect to sign the papers in the next few weeks. It will be tough.
Thank God for memories.
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