Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Value in the Past

As we sing "Auld Lang Syne" and say farewell to another year, I think of the value of memories and how mysterious the act of remembering can be.  Some memories appear as if they will stay with me forever, while others just float on by, not being stored in any particular place for me to easily retrieve them.  I seem to collect an odd assortment of memories in my head, sometimes for occasions that don't seem very remarkable on the surface, so I have made it a growing practice over the past few years to pay very close attention to as much as I can each day, carving special places for my life's moments so that I can replay them whenever I need a lift or a reminder of my blessings.  For instance, over the past year, I remember vividly the evening that Larry and I sat outside of the Chateau at Devil's Lake State Park, listening to big band music as we gazed up at the stars on a clear night.  I hear the sound of joyful voices resonating throughout our church's sanctuary as they sang a cappella hymns at a friend's funeral.  I think of the cheery call of the first red-winged black birds of the year.  I see the card my husband gave me to celebrate the publication of my e-book and the start of my new job, two things that happened within the same week. I recall the scent of the first lilacs blooming outside of our kitchen window last May and the taste of the season's first apple in September.  I hear the laughter of good friends around the table as we shared potluck supper.  There is indeed value in the past.  On this last day of 2013, I reflect on the many special moments of the past year, even those moments that weren't especially easy or joyful, while also anticipating the good that will happen in the new year to come.  May you have a happy, healthy new year.

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