Since Thursdays are referred to as TBT (Turn Back Time) and Fridays are known as Flashback Friday, why not call today Remembrance Monday?
Memories are different for everyone and they come in all varieties. Some are funny. Some are awkward. Others are so amazing that we try to recreate them over and over. Occasionally when I’m alone, I find myself daydreaming about a great moment in time and I start laughing out loud. I’m transported back to that happy place where I wish I could press the freeze-frame button. When that happens, sometimes it makes me want to reach out to whomever I shared that original moment with and remind them too. Who wouldn’t want to recall a great memory?
Do you remember the skits Chris Farley used to do on SNL? “Do you remember when umm he ustah do those skits? Do you remember? Remember that? Those funny ones? Umm. R’member? That was AWWWESOME!”
PEOPLE, PLACES AND THINGS
Sometimes I hear a song on the radio and it immediately brings me back to another time and place from my past. Steve Winwood, The Violent Femmes, Joni Mitchell and Depeche Mode make me think of my pre-pubescent years. New Order, Trinere & Friends, The B-52’s and Bon Jovi puts me in a High School trance.
Billy Joel has his own channel on SiriusXM now. HIS OWN CHANNEL! Last week I rolled down all the windows and blasted Scenes From An Italian Restaurant until the car shook. For a split second, not only was I in a New York State of Mind but I time-capsuled myself to the back seat of my Grandfather’s silver Cadillac Coupe De Ville. I loved it when he played his Billy Joel cassettes and we’d all sing out loud on the way to a Sunday night dinner!
Ever since pregnancy, I have a very sensitive nose. I can sniff out even the subtlest of smells. Certain scents have a powerful effect on me. Still, to this day when I get a whiff of the intoxicating fragrance Fracas Parfum, it instantly reminds me of one of my Mother’s friends.
Salt water air that blows in the late afternoon has a distinct aroma. When I smell the ocean it reminds me of the Jersey Shore. I could practically drown myself in all of the amazing memories of being on the beach back in the day with family and friends.
I L-O-V-E the smell of rain. Specifically, the combination of rain and pine trees and firewood always reminds me of sleep-away camp in Maine. The smell of one rainstorm is usually all it takes to flood my mind with countless Camp Pinecliffe memories.
GONE BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN
Memories of loved ones we’ve lost can be bittersweet. While it’s painful not to be able to see and touch them in this physical world, their presence is always among us. Just the other day I was chatting with a girlfriend of mine who lost her young husband. Our conversation got a little heavy when she said to me, “Look at my arm. I just got the chills. Whenever that happens it makes me feel like he’s here.”
I believe in stuff like that. I have to believe it in order to try to make sense of the things that are otherwise incomprehensible. I find comfort in knowing that those I’ve lost are here with me in some way, shape or form. I’ve read a bunch of books on the topic and my heart knows what my heart knows even if my head takes a while longer to catch up.
For me, it doesn’t have to be a specific day of the week to think about someone I miss. I’m constantly reminded of loved ones in many ways. A song, a smell, a sporting event or even a favorite old saying are just a few examples. Sometimes it makes me sad and I cry. Other times I’m so grateful that the memories are still vivid because that is what helps to keep those I’ve lost so very much alive.
In my house, I make it a priority to keep the lines of communication open and the dialogue fresh so that my children never forget the special people who have passed away. We tell stories and share individual memories as much as possible. I think that is the best way we can honor them.
It breaks my heart yet warms my heart when my kids ask questions like:
“Do you think Great Grandma Gert is exercising in Heaven?”
“Will you tell me a story about Uncle Jeff?”
“I bet if Grandpa Mark was here he’d take me for a ride on his lap, right?”
For today, Remembrance Monday, I urge you to take a brief pause from the regular rat race of life and reflect on a memory from the past. Be it a person, place or thing that you choose to focus on, it really doesn’t matter; Just take a moment and simply remember. Maybe you’ll laugh… Maybe you’ll cry… Maybe you’ll do both. I have a hunch it’ll end up making you feel good. Seriously, do it. I think you should. I’m gonna do it too. I’ve unpolishedly declared it Remembrance Monday.
JUST TO LET YOU KNOW… Everyone may have their own, unique way that they remember. Some people like to be left alone where others might like to be surrounded by large groups of people. I think I fall somewhere in the middle. On this Remembrance Monday, I’m dedicating my memories to someone very dear. In my family we affectionately call him The Bear. He was grizzly on the outside, but oh such a lovable teddy bear on the inside! Seven days a week you’re always on our minds, but we’re especially remembering you today….. xox