Random Thoughts

Saturday, February 24, 2007


I truly feel that I have posted this before, but maybe not. A few months ago, my pastor included in his sermon a point about how when we are young we want to grow up, but when we are grown we don't want to be children ever again. I have to disagree.

I would give almost anything to return to my 4th year of life. My parents were still married; not that I want them to get back together. It was just an easier time because I had never heard of or imagined that parents wouldn't be together. I spent most of my days with my grandmother (who passed on when I was a freshmen in high school), playing and laughing and watching too much TV. My cousin Alison would stay with us after school and then I had someone to play with.

On my mom's days off, we would play outside, getting a tan or something, until her Soaps came on, which we watched together (I was way too young to understand the sketchiness of it all). She would lay in the backyard on an old patchwork quilt and I would play. I could never lay there with her for very long. I would ask "How long until the shows come on?" about every other minute. My dad would often pick me up from my grandmother's house and we would go home and watch TV (Star Trek and Batman were the ones I remember most) or sometimes he would buy me root beer and mini hamburgers. Sometimes I got to spend the night with my grandparents and that was always fun. And I saw my cousins at least once a month for family birthday celebrations. I had tons of little toys that I loved: Heman, Thundercats, My Little Pony, sock monkeys, Care Bears, and so many more. We didn't have a lot of money, but I had no idea. I was happy.

Sometimes, my dad and I would go fishing in this little pond that someone he knew owned. He would bait my hook and cast for me, and I would catch so many little blue gills. He usually let me catch more than him so that I felt good about myself. We had this big black walnut tree and Daddy would take a hammer and crack some of the walnuts open so that I could eat them. He built me a swing set, too. I think it was only one or two swings, but I loved it. And I had a big wheel. I used to ride it around in circles in the back yard when the weather was nice and I dragged it up on the L-shaped porch when it rained.

We had this really long driveway, so it was an event to walk to get the mail. Our house was on the top of this hill in a valley of sorts and it had the best echo. You could stand on the porch and shout at yourself. I loved to show other people the echo. We even used to walk the hills behind our house and cut our own Christmas tree.

I remember that Christmas. I got a My Kid Sister, who I named Rachel, a tent club house that I played with forever, and this little stool with my name painted on the top and a bunny, I think.

I know it all sounds a little Laura Ingles, but I was very happy. And it really was like that. When you're 4, you don't pay attention to how much money you have or what kind of clothes the other kids at the store are wearing. Everyone loves you and wants to know you. All of your ideas seem real and your dreams are attainable. Everything is an adventure and laughter comes so easily. When you fall, someone picks you up and dusts you off and you always have enough hugs and kisses.

That year is covered in sunshine in my memory. Sunshine and laughter and smiles.