Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Memories – A Rerun

Staying positive is important to me.  I work very hard at it. 

Very hard.

It’s not something that comes naturally to me.  Right before Christmas, I was on a good clip of love and light. 

I was working out, making good food choices, having fun with The Babes, and blogging.  Life was good.

And then January 1st of 2012 came and blew my positivity streak to bits.  In case you haven’t been reading in a while you can catch up with how the first forty-eight hours of 2012 rolled into one bad month.

I was staying all positive, believing that February would be when 2012 was going to start to turn around.

Not so.

This Sunday, I lost a very special uncle.  I am very saddened by this, and my heart aches for my aunt.

I am going to celebrate his life and honor my aunt’s courageousness in taking such good care of him by rerunning this post I wrote about them when they moved to Arizona.

I used to hate Change.  Not just hate, but detest Change, cringe whenever things were not the same.  If Change were a person walking down the street, I would avoid all eye contact and ignore it. 

After having kids, I’ve learned to accept change.  Because whether I like it or not, it’s going to happen.  So Change and I became like Facebook friends; acknowledging each other but not really committing to a real relationship.  Eventually that relationship evolved, and I would say Change and I are pretty friendly with each other.  Especially when Change means less sleepless night.

However, there are certain circumstances when I want to revert to my prior relationship with Change and look away when it comes near.

Like when my Aunt Nicki and Uncle Ned sold their house in Michigan to live in Arizona for six months.  I didn’t expect to become so emotional when I found out, but I did.  I have so many wonderful memories in that house.

Like the time when I was sixteen and home all alone overnight.  I thought I heard something, and they didn’t mind that it was midnight when I came over because I was scared.

I also learned to make golumpki (stuffed cabbage) from my grandmother’s recipe at her kitchen table.  I also gained a whole new appreciate for the effort put forth for our traditional Christmas entrĂ©e.

I will miss the Heritage Hallway.  There was a hallway filled with old pictures of my aunt and uncle’s family.  Whenever I would look at these photos, I felt connected to my family, especially my grandfather, who passed away long before I was born.

Aunt Nicki hosted my bridal shower at her house and worked together with my parents and other aunts and uncles to create a beautiful party.  And the next day, I went to Aunt Nicki’s house to visit with her and Aunt Karen.  I remember eating a giant bowl of cherries and just chatting with them.  Something so simple, but so memorable.

I also remember the time when Aunt Nicki and Uncle Ned came over to see me after Marie was born.  She made homemade chicken soup and chocolate biscotti.  A few weeks later, she helped me bring Marie, only six weeks old, to get an ultrasound of her head.

I remember feeling totally comfortable dropping Marie off so Aunt Nicki and Uncle Ned could watch Marie while I emptied out my former classroom with my Dad.  She was only 3 months old.

When Thomas was born, she came to see us and then dropped everything to watch Marie when there was a change in childcare plans.

I am not sure if Aunt Nicki and Uncle Ned know how much those moments mean to me.

It’s like this part of me and my family story is moving away, and it makes me sad.  When someone in the family network moves away, left behind is a gap.  I look back at all those important times in my life and realize the richness they have added to my life.

So instead of being sad because she won’t be in that home anymore, I am going to adopt a new saying.  Instead of saying, “Home is where the heart is,” I am going to change it to “Heart is home to our memories.”  

That house is not theirs anymore, but it doesn’t matter, because we all still have those memories with us.  They have done so many nice things for me and my family that I want to show my appreciation and support by cheering them on in this new chapter of their life.

Because that’s what family does.