Wednesday, May 28, 2008

I Miss Them

"There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place where colors are brighter, the air softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again." -Elizabeth Lawrence

I'm at the point now in the week where there is honestly no point in detailing my weekend really, it wasn't that highly interesting, it was just in-laws, a pub and a strip club. That's the basic summary of it. Was a holiday weekend, Monday being our Memorial Day (wherein Richie and I went golfing), still zoomed by... That's the gist of the whole thing. So I'll just fast-forward from all that into today, Wednesday.

Missing them, my family once again. No, not the them that they all are now, but the "Them" that was, that will never be again, the fresh and happy faces and high spirits. The fun and happy 'they' that carried me through so many laughs and so many tears too. Some times were hard, other times were wonderful, all those times are long gone, except the shrapnel still embedded deep in the walls of my memory.

It all came flooding back to me really, this particular ache, today as I was driving down just another busy street in Memphis, a faint hint of paint fumes hit my nose and I zoomed back to early childhood. There we were, Mom and me, under the carport, in the humid sweet air of the summertime. Birds were chirping (and what's more, you could hear them with no busy city-buzz anywhere in sight). That old huge fan was blowing... and the delicious smell of paint fumes mixed with the warm breezes.

Mom was pouring her Plaster of Paris into various molds, and painting the ones that were already dried. We had molds of many different things, Fruit, Figures, Maps, our little hands. I remember she always let me work them with her.

We'd mix the Plaster of Paris in a bucket of some sort, and then once mixed, you pour the concoction into your preferred mold. It was interesting to me in that it set itself, you had to allow it to dry, then once dry it would go through it's very own "heating" phase, where the 'setting' actually took place. Once they cooled back down, you could paint them anyway you wanted.

That's where the fumes came in, if Mom was spray painting some of the pieces. I always enjoyed the smell of paint fumes... maybe that explains some things huh? ;)

At home, we were always doing things growing up. Mom was letting us all play in the kitchen, or do those plaster pieces, or we were off playing our very own imagination games, like digging for magic wands... Dad would go to any lengths creating things for us, and making us laugh. My parents made sure our childhood was so much better than theirs. They dedicated themselves to caring for their families, putting what was best for the children first [something that is quite absent from so many of today's parents].

It is for that and so much more that I will ever be grateful, and never forget. They transformed the rough spots into silk. Though It sure doesn't make this road through adulthood any easier to bear.

1 comment:

  1. That was a beautiful post Jackie. I loved it. Every now and then those old "scents" will resurface and remind you of a memory. And it seems just like yesterday (instead of decades). I love the smell of paint fumes.

    Your mum sounds so creative. What a cool thing to do. We only ever played with Plaster of Paris in art class, just once.

    Your childhood sounds dreamy. :)

    And I couldn't agree with you more on the last sentence.


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