I’ll remember this weekend for a long time. Spending g time with friends and family is something I cherish. Now that the day is winding down I find myself alone for a few hours. It’s during times like this that I find a quiet place to think.
Lost and Found
There’s a place in West Michigan where I go as often as I can. Aside from the beauty there are the years of memories tied to this place. This year I visited four times with my kids, each time making new memories I won’t forget.
The path pictured leads to one of those places where I can stand and think back over the years. In my mind I can picture who I was with and it’s bittersweet to think about sometimes. Time changes things but the memories remain. I can go back and remember years past but more importantly I can make new memories that one day will be those bittersweet moments I remember.
There are things in life a man holds dear to his heart. Things that are such a part of his life they make up who he is. A man will lay down his life and sacrifice so much to preserve them. Freedom is one of those things and family is another. There are other things but I imagine these two are so important that for most they rule.
The loss of freedom, death of a family member and divorce are three things that have a profound impact on the spirit of a man. I compare those last two closely because the pain you feel from losing them are not unlike. I’ve never experienced the first. My heart is heavy always as I think about the loss of my family.
Over the past few months I’ve been slowly putting things in order. I’m in no hurry but it’s a thing I do when I have free time like today. It’s quite a process really, to dig into stuff and find items that are attached to memories. I always attach memories to objects like that.
A couple of months ago I threw away our old computer desk. It was a mess. All the items in the desk were thrown into a large box right next to the loveseat with plans to sort it all out when I got a new desk. The new desk looks a lot better than the other one. It’s smaller and simple without drawers or little nooks to stuff things into. Our computer desks over the years always ended up looking like a junk drawer full of things that were more junk I suppose but not really.
This new desk is dark wood and clean with only one drawer on top that lifts up like a bar counter. The drawer is really thin so I can’t put much in it other than my inspection camera, batteries and a few other small things. There’s nothing underneath either so I can’t stuff papers or odd items in it. The large box has been just sitting but without a desk that can accommodate all the items so I need to throw things away and put things into boxes for storage. Today I have time to sort it out and I did.
The thing about staying behind in the house is you always see things that bring back memories. Cleaning out boxes or a corner of the house turns up things forgotten about. I guess knowing that makes it easy to procrastinate. That bouquet of flowers we had preserved from our wedding day are still sitting in the glass case in the living room. I’ve been meaning to box that up and put it in the basement but they’re really pretty so I think I’ll leave them for just for a while longer. I found a little note I wrote you years ago in the big box. I should have written more of those.
That large box had a small scrapbook our oldest daughter made. In it were scraps of paper, photos and a couple of art projects she made in school. While flipping the pages I wondered where she got some of the pictures. It’s just like her to have things that don’t belong to her but I wasn’t at all upset this time. Most of those pictures were of the two of us from a long time ago at your parents place, back when I first met you. I wondered what she was thinking by keeping those pictures in the scrapbook. Some of the items were fairly recent like a card from your youngest sisters bridal shower. Then there’s a wedding picture of us I don’t even remember ever seeing. She wrote ‘mom and dad’ on the back with a marker. It’s really a good picture too. I wonder why we never enlarged any of our wedding pictures and hung them up? If we had, this would have been one of them I think
In less than one week we have a court date. On that date we will submit the terms of our divorce to the judge. I’ve been meaning to thank you for being so considerate during all of this. The terms are very fair, even more so than I thought they would be and I’m sorry for thinking you would try to take advantage of me, then again you never were like that. I wonder if you are as nervous as I am about next week? What should I wear? I always used to ask you what to wear during important events.
Sunset at The North Breakwater Lighthouse
The walk down the pier is always worth the sunsets.
Sunset over Lake Michigan
I read somewhere that the person behind the camera misses out. Rather than enjoying the moments we record it for later. For me that’s not at all true. I enjoy the moment and capture it for later.Last week I took a couple of the kids north for a short vacation. We stayed in Ludington Michigan, one of my favorite vacation spots. Almost as soon as I drove away I missed the place.
Sometimes in the hustle of the day-to-day I need a reminder to slow down a little. I think I’m pretty good at hitting the brakes sometimes. As a father I know the importance of making time for my kids and being self-employed provides me the opportunity to stop when I want to. At the same time being self-employed means I feel like I need to always work because I don’t get any paid days off.
My own father, who worked a lot when I was growing up, told me a while back to make sure I don’t work too much. There are things infinitely more important than making money and building your business. The money you make and spend won’t mean much in the end. It’s the memories you make with people you care about that have the most value in life.
This morning on a job site I saw this snail on a window ledge. He wasn’t concerned about me taking a picture and didn’t even move when I touched his shell.