personal growth

Lesson 20: Capture Every Moment

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Feeling fortunate this Friday.

I feel my mom strongly around me today. Her voice, her smell, and her general essence is clear in my mind. I know that I am lucky to have that today, because with each day that passes, she travels further along her journey and I travel further along mine. That being said, I miss her greatly, but am feeling fortunate that she is on an amazing journey free of suffering and chooses periodically to stop in and fill me with her spirit. Today at a stop light, a little leaf from a bougainvillea (which very distinctly reminds me of her) flew around my car and onto my windshield in front of me. It’s been a windy day, so that in itself may not be extraordinary, but this solitary leaf still made me smile. Those are precious reminders of how much I love her.

Many people have expressed to me that they are enjoying reading my blog which has made me feel extremely happy. I know that it is my mom’s life that makes this blog something wonderful, I am just feeling grateful that I can write it. With that said, those that have mentioned to me that they simply cannot put into words how they feel or are feeling at a loss for what to say, I want to offer you an idea. This is a writing challenge that I also want to exercise as often as possible:

The challenge is to take a moment out of your life when you would normally capture a picture (we all do it, we post it on Facebook or Instagram , or we text it to a friend) and rather than taking the picture, or in addition to taking the picture, attempt to write what you are wanting to capture. Ideally what you express is more than just the scene or the person in the picture—it is the feeling being evoked that is the true art behind it. I’m interpreting this a bit and relating it to my mom. I had a moment earlier where I wished that I had taken more pictures of her while she was at my house. I have images of her in my head, but I don’t have the picture itself. Rather than being sad for every moment I couldn’t capture, I want to put in writing what I remember of that moment and hope that over the years this serves me just as well as a photograph. Please join me in capturing her “uncaptured” moments!

“The Bench”

Our kitchen is a large room that spills into a living space by our backdoor. There is no separation between the rooms. Along the wall shared by the backyard is a large bay window, which opens up to show our bougainvillea. We were given a bench by Chris’ dad when we first moved in; a bench older than Chris that survived his youth. It originally was an ottoman, with square cushions on each end and a table in the center. It fills the space underneath the window perfectly and the blue cushions cleanly contrast the pinks and reds from outside. It provides a perfect spot to gaze outside and process life’s uncertainties.

My mom, dad and aunt came to visit one early September Sunday. She entered my house wearing a black bucket shaped hat that her short bangs peaked out of. Her eyes were bright and almond shaped as she smiled when walking in. She straightened out the gray vest she wore that had a black embroidered flower on the shoulder. It synched at her waist and ended right above her hips. Her white jeans fit her loose, although they were so thin, her legs had gotten so much thinner. When she walked in she went straight to that bench and had a seat. With each step she leaned slightly to the right, this was caused by a foot operation from her teenage years. It was a swagger I had gotten used to, but was often confused by strangers as a coquettish bounce. As she sat on the bench the sunlight spilled into the room and onto the back of her neck. Looking out the window at the bougainvillea she proudly asked my dad if he loved the house, too.

3 thoughts on “Lesson 20: Capture Every Moment

  1. Thank you. I need hear this, I need to do this. After my nana passed away I frantically searched every folder in my computer for pictures of her. I found a few, but not so many as I had hoped and none with us together. Thank you for reminding me that just because I lack a photograph doesn’t make those memories lost. Writing things down is just as effective, maybe even more so. ❤️

    1. Your Nana was so prolific and wise in her words, I have such a tremendous amount of love and respect for her. A really good friend of my family recommended to my sisters and I that we write down memories from the kids, as well as ourselves. Hannah especially since she is a little older probably has a unique view of Nana that you and she would cherish reading over time :). Love you guys. xx

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