Remembering What Matters
At one point in a conversation with a friend, the topic focused on recollections of flowers from our childhoods. Not sure how we got there, but thinking about it since, brought back a surge of random, happy memories from my youth. Science has shown that one of the ways to have happiness in the present is to revisit positive events from the past. Recalling and savoring those moments along with re-experiencing the feelings that accompanied them.
In no chronological order, I will share some of those moments that brought smiles, joy, even appreciation to the present.
I grew up in a small town, population about 5,000. We lived on Church St. so named because of the Presbyterian Church located on the corner. All of the residences were on one side of the street. They consisted of 2 or 4-family houses with the occasional single family home. I should note that there were lots of kids on my block. I lived in a street level apartment in a 4 family building owned by my grandmother. The driveway to the back parking ran between our house and another building. All along the side of the driveway grew bluebells and tiger lilies. If you followed the driveway through to the garages and behind them you would find unlandscaped green space. I remember there being one apple tree, just right for climbing, a peony bush with the most beautiful pink flowers and a patch of lilies of the valley.
Bordering the backyards of all the houses was a big field where we magically turned into famous comic book heroes, ran around or laid down watching the clouds go by on warm, sunny days. The 2 things that stand out about that field were the Indian paint brushes that grew there and a brook at one edge of the field. How we loved to cross the brook stepping on stones trying not to get our shoes wet. Visions of the Indian paint brushes, bluebells, tiger lilies, peonies and lilies of the valley have stood out in my memory all these years, bringing back some of the joys of childhood.
Back in the daymost of the girls had roller skates. You may remember, the kind that fit over your shoes. You needed a special key to tighten them. If I listen carefully, I can still hear the rumbling of the metal wheels on the cement sidewalks.
Speaking of transportation modes, my first bike was a beautiful cornflower blue and cream Columbia 2 wheeler. I do believe I traveled the entire world on that bike.
If the other kids were not around, there was always hopscotch. Out came the chalk to draw the numbered squares on the sidewalk and I entertained myself, always the winner.
There are so many memories. I will just share one more. The church on the corner had a rather large yard enclosed by a chain link fence. In Autumn the yard filled up with fallen leaves. Since the minister’s daughter was my best friend, She and I and some other kids would go into the yard and pile the leaves up against the fence. Next, we went outside the yard, climbed up on the fence, jumped into the piles of leaves and burrowed underneath them. Uber fun.
What situations, experiences in your past bring joy and happiness to the present as you revisit them? Those memories matter.
Comments are welcomed.