Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Memory Lane


My mother’s veins pop out at her hands. 
Like blue channels of water on the way to join the river. 

Mine do that too. Whenever I see them, I think of her. As a kid, I would see her hands like that and get nervous. Why did this happen to her? It didn’t seem normal. Now I laugh at the thought.

We had a white picket fence around the front of our house growing up, like the kind people talk about when they jokingly, or not-so-jokingly, refer to the "Modern American Home". 

2.5 kids.
A dog.
A white picket fence.
You know... like that.

My favorite was in the spring when flowers of all kinds would erupt all around the fence and really, all over the yard. It was like heaven just appeared out of nowhere in every color and shape. Every petal and stem. I think it glittered everyone’s eyelids up a bit as we breathed in all this new color.

When I started getting more into long-distance running after high school (before I was strictly a hard-nosed sprinter, never willing to run more than a mile at a time), I would get lost in the lap after lap around my neighborhood. The uneven pavement became an adventure for me as I was forced to keep watch of my feet like a new parent to their first-born, making sure I wouldn't journey to the ground and cause a scene.

I loved seeing dogs out on my run. The ones that really knew how to play, never running out of energy or spazz. Always keeping their owner on their toes. Sometimes I felt like the owner being dragged by my spirit, unable to keep it on a leash. My spirit like the dogs, never running out of energy or spazz.

One family on the back side of the neighborhood loop had a tire swing. 
The kind you just can't resist, no mater how old you are. 

Once a friend pushed me in it, higher than EVER, and then stood admiring her strength as she forgot to realize there was a tree a little too close to the swing on my way back. I saw it in her eyes once she became aware of its existence, but at this point, I was flying full-speed and about to slam into the tree. 

I did.
And we laughed for hours on end.
It’s fun to get a hurt a little bit. 
Good for you, I think.

I used to chase after my brothers and their friends yelling “Sohn” and “Sames”. I don’t necessarily remember struggling with my J’s, but for some reason, I just couldn’t get their names down for some while. 

My brothers played a lot of basketball growing up. And that ball would beat against the backboard long into the night as they practiced their “fakes” and all-star free throw shots. It was a comforting sound in a way. You always knew they were having fun as they fine-tuned their skills, making accuracy and detail their very best friends.

One brother took pride in his coaching skills and taught me a few things. I must say, when parents would watch my 10-year old self suddenly “fake someone out” on the church basketball court, they all had the same thought- She has older brothers.

I took pride in that.



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