I visited my dad on Saturday. Our visits tend to be short – not because we run out of things to say to each other (two writers talking? Never short of words!) but rather that he gets tired and I’m way sensitive to it, even when he’d rather I wasn’t. At 84, though, he’s allowed to get tired.
We did the usual things. Took a garden tour and liberated several Meyer lemons from his famous tree, and also got quite a few white grapefruit. I had printed a couple family photos, so I helped him put those into frames. And then came picture time.
He’s been having me go through boxes of photos, to see what I’d like to keep. I found several, and then I found the big box. Full of one book and several journals. My Grandmother Hazel’s journals. That just added to all the memories I’d collected that day.
With total permission, I lugged the box to my car and panted, doing so. (I’d added my photos from the batch I’d gone through earlier.) So many photos. So many memories.
Then I came across some photos of Scott. Here are two of my favorites.
And this one…
Carrying the box to my car, I strained under the load. It was a long, old fashioned cardboard file box, and it was full. My dad hovered as I carried it.
“You okay? You don’t need help? Looks heavy,” he said.
I smiled at him. “Memories carry weight,” I answered.
He nodded. “There must be at least fifty years of memories in there.” He was referring to his mother’s daily journals, I know. In those, she poured out everything but in such sparing details, which is a blog post for another day.
But as I loaded the box in the car, I noticed he stood a little taller. “You’re officially the family historian,” he said to me.
And it looked like a bit of weight had come off his shoulders.
Happy to help, Daddy. Any time.
Happy Monday, my friends. What memories do you carry, that have more weight than maybe you want?