Wednesday, August 17, 2016

I Remember When

In my determination to write more (and subsequently stay sane) I have joined author Ann Dee Ellis in a memoir writing group. 3 days a week she gives prompts and then for eight minutes we write. Please feel free to join in! Here's my eight minute attempt today:

 I remember when my mom went back to school. The night before my father gave us blessings by putting his hand on our heads and pronouncing hopes and visions into our darkened living room. One-by-one until all the kids had been properly blessed, and then my mother. Who lifted off the couch and said with a voice I had never heard before (excitement? nervousness?), "I need a blessing! I am going back to school tomorrow too!"

I wasn't as shocked that my mother and I were both going to school for the first time, me to elementary, her to finish a degree at BYU, but that she had needs. She said, " I need..."

And I thought about that for awhile after the blessing fest was over, after everyone had emptied our living room. In the dark, yellow light from the kitchen made a stripe across our living room floor. I lied down on the carpet on my back and thought about my mother.

My mother, as it turned out, was a real human being. With needs and hopes and desires, insecurities. She was nervous. This was my first registration that adult females were human. (I knew my dad had needs, he was always hungry when he came home from work.) And suddenly, I cared about my mother in a pastoral way, I wanted her to be safe.

The next day I came home from school eager to hear about her day on campus. She was happy and tired. We sat on her bed and discussed our days. We always did that.

Hours later the noises my dad makes when he came home from work--engine, car door, back door, keys plopping on counter, shoes, "Where's your mother?" filled our home.

And she got up to make spaghetti.