What do you do with the memories?
The addition of this cartoon is not meant to add humor to this post. I can't say I ever really found "Hagar" funny anyway, just kind of appropriate for now.
The house my mother grew up in, was built by my grandfather. The walls were not made of studs, but of tree saplings. Each time my grandmother had a child, a room was added. On the South side of the house there was a small hill, going into a kind of swampy area. Into the side of the hill, Grandpa used a shovel, and wheel barrel to hand dig out a basement.
I was not born when this happened, but heard the story of it when I was young. Each time I went into the basement, I thought about the back breaking labor, and hours, Grandpa had to have put in to make the basement possible. This is a fond memory to be sure.
I have other fond memories too. Like when we would arrive at Grandma and Grandpa's house in the late night. Grandma would always get up to greet us. Then one by one we would go into their small bedroom, to Grandpa's out-stretched arms for a hug. Oh, the wonderful memories. Memories of family reunions in the yard, going outback to the outhouse, even though there was indoor plumbing. The old table set up by the side of the road, where Grandpa used to sell bunches of Gladiolas. The memory of going there, and Grandpa being gone. Then many years later, Grandma being gone. Sigh.
My folks had bought the house from Grandma, several years before she passed away. When they retired they moved up to the live in Mom's childhood home, with the hand dug basement. The accumulation of memories continued. In 2008, my brother bought the house from my folks. My father was living there, with my brother, when Mom passed away last year.
In 2009, Mom's family home went into foreclosure. Now, the bank owns it. The contents put in a storage unit. My father's heart broken, again.
I was talking to a friend recently about this turn of events. The loss of the family home. The anger, and disappointment I felt. I asked her what do you do with the memories? She told me the memories will live on, just like the memories of my mom live on, in my heart. I told her this was different, because my mom's passing was inevitable. All living beings die. I told her the loss of the home was not inevitable. It didn't have to happen. There was no big bad bank, or bad economy to cause this loss.
Where do you put the memories, of a non-living thing, that had so much life?