Tag Archives: Memories

15 years

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The other day, the little house I bought when I was a single 29-year-old popped into my mind. It wasn’t anything extravagant;  a little 3-bedroom ranch, in an ok part of town. But it was mine. Where it was didn’t  seem too important. I never expected to be in it all that long. “The long drive to work will be ok,” I thought to myself,  “I don’t need to go out so much anyway. I will  be fine for a few years.” Just seemed like the thing to do.  I ended up being there for 15 years.

A lot happened during those 15 years in that little house; tons of miles on my car, new job, lots of dates, marriage, baby showers for friends, weddings. There were Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings, going away parties, new friendships, and then separation, divorce and losing my dad … Yes .. A lot happened. Made me think about my recent townhouse purchase. This time, if I stay for 15 years, I will be 63.  63 … I have repeated that number in my head now for a few days. Does not sound possible.

Those 15 years in my little house felt so short, yet a lifetime seemed to happen there. Staying here in my townhouse isn’t mandatory, but if I do, what will these walls witness?  Will I be happy here? Things are so very different now.  Twelve years ago, a life with someone and having a family was a possibility; that, or at least part of that, has slipped away.  What else and who else will slip away? Who might enter my life?  Will the years fly by so quickly again?  Will I spend them alone? These are things I never put much thought into in the past, but time has become more insistent; it’s telling me it waits for no one or anything.

I have no real plan on how to proceed with my future.  I’m not sure if that’s good or bad.  Plans can go terribly wrong and leave you disappointed or worse yet, heartbroken.  No plan, and I may drift aimlessly about or become a hermit and binge watch Netflix.  Neither sounds appealing. So for now, I’m going to plan to at least not let either happen.  I may need some company on this journey so please leave any comments or thoughts you have on dealing with the inevitable process of aging.

***Note – this little 63 moment I had freaked me out so much, I spent an hour in a half on the phone with a financial advisor. I must at least have a plan to support my cats ….

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Photos in Boxes

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Does anyone else have a box like this? I have two. At one time, they were sort of organized, but after moving and being shuffled through numerous times, they are just a mix of my life from college through my early 30s – before everyone had a camera on their phone. I keep saying I need to go through them and throw some away. But that is so hard. I begin the sorting process then start reminiscing and laughing and sending them in text to people. I never get very far.

These days, with digital cameras and cameras on every phone, I rarely print pictures any more. It’s a shame really. When I was growing up, I remember sitting for hours going through old photo albums asking mom about this and that. I’m the youngest with an older sister and brother. I refer to myself as a “gift”, they refer to me as a “mistake”.  If nothing else, I was definitely a surprise to my parents. By the time I came along, they were busy with other things, and didn’t seem to take a lot of pictures. The photo albums where a way for me to connect with the past I didn’t share with them.

I did start printing pictures of my big vacation trips and putting them in photo albums. Now, when I start feeling down or thinking to myself, “I don’t go anywhere”, I pull them out and start flipping through them; reconnecting with the past and thinking, yes, I’ve done a lot of things. I may just now have ventured to Europe, but oh the adventures my friends and I have had, and still have, are priceless. I’ve done most of my traveling with the same group of friends from college. The stories we have are funny and bind us together.

Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon

We hit Vegas for a week (which is too long to be in Vegas I think) and took in the Hoover Dam and Red Rock Canyon. When one decided to move to Phoenix for a few years, well, that was just another excuse for a trip. We made our visit into a vacation, driving up to the Grand Canyon, staying in Sedona on the way back. It was beautiful. We hiked, laughed and explored a new place together.   There have been numerous beach trips, road trips to Charleston and even longer road trips to Florida, including Key West, and a most memorable excursion to Jazz Fest in New Orleans. I’ve taken a cruise to Hawaii

Dallas TX

Dallas TX

Hawaii

Hawaii

and the Bahamas, trekked up to New York City in a van, sat on a long horn in Texas, ventured across the border into Mexico several times, watched the start of the Iditarod in Alaska, sat and had dinner at the top of the Space Needle in Seattle and sipped fruity drinks on a beautiful beach in the Dominican Republic.

Mostly though, the pictures jumbled in my boxes are snapshots of brief moments: quick trips, parties, evenings in, birthdays, holidays, nephews etc. Maybe they don’t seem as special as big planned vacations, but they evoke memories just the same. Life happens in between the big trips too; college, first true love (and broken hearts), nephews growing up, first houses, and of course memories of dad.

  college   me brian adam

dad and michael  fishing with dad  dad making gravy

jamie and santaSome photos just make me smile, reminding me of times we laughed so hard, we had tears in our eyes. There were the annual Memorial Day weekend beach trips, with margaritas to be consumed and mischief in the air.  Yes, I remember the firemen from Rockaway Beach, NJ.  Good Times…

jamie going away 2rjamie going away  doris wedding   beach 1  image   halloween

me and chris So many years and so many memories in these two boxes.   It is so hard to decide which ones are disposable. If I throw one away, will the memory be gone forever?  Regardless, they deserve a better home than a box. I suppose I will invest in several photo albums, and on a cold, yucky February weekend, I will begin the tedious process of culling through my past.  We’ve had a good time ladies!  Maybe I haven’t been everywhere I want to go, yet…. but I’ve certainly lived my life.  There’s little I would change… well, I maybe could have done without the short marriage stint, but even then, there were a few good times.  I think my photos are some of my most treasured items.