You ever go back to something you loved as a child and it looks so different? A field isn’t so wide.. a staircase isn’t so high.. a playground isn’t so big??
I had that happen today. But I hadn’t been to this play ground as a child. .. I went there when my children were so much younger. I went there a lot when Jennifer was 2 and Jonathan under a year. I was shocked at how much smaller all the equipment looked to me.. especially as her little brother scaled it in 3 seconds.
I didn’t know that could happen as an adult. That my adult memory could be so changed in just a few years..
I guess time really can change things..
I wonder if thats how I will look back on her.. If she will seem smaller .. somehow different to me in my memory than she does now. It isn’t a comforting thought or a scary one.. It is just a thought that took me aback with the reality of it.
It was a last minute idea to head to the park.. Saturdays “no into a yes”. I was flooded by memories when we parked. I wasn’t expecting that even though I was the one who picked the park. Its a big place. I forgot that the far field held her tee ball practices. I remember her running around with all these other girls.. I remember being so pregnant with Charlotte and thinking life couldn’t get more perfect.
I remember how proud my boys were watching their big sister through the chain link fence.. and how happy she was when Daddy surprised her by coming to watch practices and games. The way she would suddenly start skipping more than running when she saw him.
And how worried I was about snacks.. hoping that other parents would understand how much she wanted to get to eat the same snacks as the other kids. .. how much I hoped they would be willing to bring gluten free food for the team. How then it seemed like such a rough lot in life she had been given.
On the playground it was almost surreal. Looking at these structures and remembering a younger Jennifer.. how brave she was as she climbed to the top.. other moms surprised I let her.. And then she fell. I was embarrassed. But scooped her up cried her tears and let her climb it again.
Determined. Jennifer was so very determined. I think thats how she learned to dress herself so young. And button her own buttons .. somehow even down her back if need be. She never hit a obstacle she wanted to overcome that stopped her. I was going to say until cancer.. but that’s not true.
Jennifer died on her own terms. She died when she was ready. .. when she chose to go.
Cancer didn’t control her.. it didn’t beat her.
She beat it. In her own way. The tumors that plagued her now helping researchers to find a cure. Now and forever she will be cancer free. Another time to flip the script
Maybe that’s the way I should look at each 12th.
Not just one month gone from me..
but another month she is
…until there is a cure…