It was late evening. Nathan and I were just starting to relax after finally putting the kids in bed.
“muuuum, mum.” Miles called out and I thank God that I was in a patient mood that night. “Mum, I accidentally tore the tag off my feather pen that I got at musee marmonette monet. It’s not a souvenir anymore. I won’t remember. Mum, I won’t be able to remember”
My memory flicks back a good 20 years or so. I was sitting on my mum and dad’s bed having a conversation with my Dad. He told me that he remembered one time when he was a boy, there was nothing special about the moment but he’d wondered if he would ever remember that time in the future or if it would be lost forever and he’d decided to try and remember, as we sat there we talked about memories, time and purpose and I promised myself I would remember it always.
“It’s ok Miles. You probably will remember it because now we’ve talked about it and you’ll try to remember it always. but you know, you don’t have to remember everything. We take photos, and all of us are here, Ezra and Kody probably won’t remember much but Tiggy and Dad and you and I will all remember different things and we can remind each other.”
He was quiet for a bit longer then I hear him again, “Muuum, mum. I have to remember the cardboard cubby house we had in Dunedin and I won’t because you deleted the photos, mum, I HAVE to remember but I won’t.”
I reassure him that I didn’t delete the photos and talk a bit more about good times, fun things and memories. I tell him that God gave moments to him at the time they happen and that’s when they’re important for us, I tell him that even if he doesn’t remember everything, he’ll still have learnt from it and God will still use it to shape him into who he will be. I believe it, but even in my ears, my reassurances sound inadequate and I know why. Miles isn’t the only one who’s lost sleep because of a fear of loosing memories in this household. I struggle with how to deal with it also. I always have.
In frustration and without conviction, I suggest he think about something else and try to sleep while I put some music on. I sit on the lounge, while he lies in bed, thinking and listening.
The sun comes up, it’s a new day dawning
It’s time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass, and whatever lies before me
Let me be singing when the evening comes
Bless the Lord, O my soul
O my soul
Worship His holy name
Sing like never before
O my soul
I’ll worship Your holy name
For all your goodness I will keep on singing,
10,000 reasons for my heart to find.
That’s it Miles, I remember now! for you and for me. Don’t worry about forgetting, Don’t stay awake struggling to do the impossible and remember it all. And don’t, in frustration, try not to think about it, or wish you could just forget it all (because if he’s as much like me as I think he is, he’s tried this coping mechanism also). Instead, Every time a memory comes to mind Bless the Lord for times gone by. Just smile and worship His Holy name. Every memory is a beautiful reason to thank God. I go in to see if he’s settled and find him sound asleep.
It’s ok, I’m sure both of us will have many more sleepless nights for our hearts to find 10000 reasons to Praise our God.
Oh God, thank you for cardboard cubbies, thank you for conversations with family, thank you for times together, thank you for Orleans and Dunedin and Adelaide, thank you for friends we might never see again, thank you for visits to castles, thank you for picnics, thank you for art, thank you for train trips, thank you for history, thank you for cameras, thank you for French school, thank you for language, thank you for beautiful songs and thank you for feather pens.