Funny how fragments spill into the mind sometimes. I reached down to scoop up a crumpled paper that had missed the trash basket, and my eye caught the edge of a printed picture. I was immediately transported back to when my son was a small boy.
We had recently returned from a summer trip to the southwest. We’d spent the Fourth of July with my Uncle Bernie in New Mexico, who was always ammo-stocked for a blammo water gun fight. From there we journeyed to the Grand Canyon. Before we left, we’d made the study of the formation of the Grand Canyon one of our homeschooling projects. As we stood at the railing looking out in awe of God’s majestic handiwork, we discussed the science of how God had formed it, and the similarities to the canyons formed after the eruption of Mt St Helen’s and subsequent earthquake and mudflows.
The memory was of a phone call after supper, back at home. My parents called, wondering how our trip went. First Jonathan had to tell them that we’d had spaghetti for supper because that was his favorite. As he talked, he climbed up to kneel on the table so he could look out the big window. Then he asked my mom if she’d ever been to the Grand Canyon. Yes, she said, a long time ago when she was a little girl. “Oh, Grandma!” Jonathan exclaimed. “You should go see it again. It’s changed a lot since then. It’s really pretty!”
I got my camera and took a picture of Jonathan, perched on the supper table and talking with his grandparents. I still have it.
Does time distort our perception of reality, or clarify it? I know, as a busy single mother I was too often too short with my son, and too focused on handling the disappointments of daily life. I did not cherish the moments or the fascination of watching my son grow into the amazing man he is now. But I am grateful for the memories nonetheless, and how they are presently seated in my mind