I receive Cook's Magazine and pour over the best way to roast vegy's and how to properly glaze a turkey. The best part of the magazine is the editorial by Christopher Kimball. Always rural, always reflective, Kimball's short essay is worth the subscription cost.
Today he reflects on a box of old snapshots he is riffling through. The pics of his kids are particularly nostalgic to him. Then he says, "My guess is that whatever we think we've lost we never had, that waiting to find it again is as stupid as expecting trout to rise to the same dry fly two days in a row, and that life is best lived between the lost and the found, just this side of hope and on the other side of nostalgia ... to my way of thinking, nothing is ever really lost, even an old cemetery. We just have to learn to stop looking for it."
I have a friend who feels she has lost who she was, by way of life's harshness. She desperately wants what she was, to be that again. Life can do damage - in fact life DOES do damage - and we all suffer our unique blows. But what we had is always ours. And though we cannot go back, there is a lot in front of us. Life is unbelievably interesting, full of possibilities, and always unfolding into newness.
I held a lovely baby boy today. I remembered my sons, my babies. I love that my arms have been full of baby. That their eyes shone. I will always have them that way. And I also have them, boisterous and hungry in my kitchen. Steve sometimes longs for the prairies, for his western country and homeland. I remind him that he always has Alberta. It is in him. He doesn't have to search for it. My mom is buried in an unpretentious graveyard near Toronto. But she lives in me, and gazes back at me through the mirror now and then.
The years have taught me to hold on, but loosely. And to carry photographs in my purse just in case I need them.