Recently, I've been thinking about the passage of time, dates I remember, significant numbers that point us to momentous change. My earliest one goes back 46 years and the damage from that time lingered for many years. Soon after, I left San Diego. Big changes were coming though I could not know it then.
I finished university. Met the Pirate and we married in haste. We both knew a good thing when we saw it. I became a mother twice. We bought our first home. I got my last job, one that lasted for 23 years right up to retirement. Nearer in time dates are becoming grandparents three times over and the near death of a daughter and her child.
Along the way, in between all that, Kennedy was assassinated. No one my age is likely to have forgotten where they were when that happened. Then 9/11 occurred. I was so grateful that my father, a Pearl Harbor Survivor, had not live to see that. He died 8 months before that savage moment, stained our memories forever.
It wasn't until I started writing this that I realized how many significant events there actually have been. My ordinary life seems not so ordinary after all. We all have dates and times we look back on. We only have to reflect back, write down just one and the rest will come to the surface naturally. At least, that is how it worked for me. They haven't all been good dates but each, in its own way, held great significance.
One date that had the greatest impact was December 17, 1977. That was the day I decided to take a day trip to a little Southern California mountain community with a friend. That was the day I met the Pirate. He's shared a lot of my significant dates over the past almost 41 years but it is the most recent one, now 1 year and 12 days ago that reverberates like a baritone wind chime.
That Sunday, January 28, 2017, was the night Krista told us that our #3 grand was on the way and that she and her little family were moving to Tennessee. The door opened wide, welcoming the Pirate back to the place he longer to be. And like Ruth in the Bible, I followed into an unfamiliar world.
Now, six months have passed by since I started sharing my adventures with you. The first impacts of change have lessened and more mundane experience demand my attention - like learning to walk again and not feeling like Quasimodo, ever off balance and slowed down to 33 1/3. Older readers will understand the speed image, younger readers, unless they are fans of vinyl, not like. And I'm more and more integrating my new reality into daily life and feeling the sharp pangs of saying good-bye to my past. Lent is here; a time of reflection. It's a time to not necessarily give something up as a disciplined offering to God, but more a changing of self, old habits, a cleansing time. Like losing weight and buying new clothes, things fit differently in life now and it's important to discover how to get just the right fit.
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