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The Lake News Online
  • My view: Hold tight to those special memories

  • As I sat back and lazily clicked through Facebook the other day, I came across photos of a wedding. The bride looked beautiful, her scintillating dress complimenting her fiery red hair. The outdoor ceremony was complete with a horse-drawn carriage against a clear sky.
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  • As I sat back and lazily clicked through Facebook the other day, I came across photos of a wedding. The bride looked beautiful, her scintillating dress complimenting her fiery red hair. The outdoor ceremony was complete with a horse-drawn carriage against a clear sky.
    Bridesmaids and groomsmen blended in with the fall atmosphere in their deep purple formalwear with red and orange flowers.
    In all, it looked like a perfectly picturesque day. I'm certain it was a special day for the couple and their family and friends.
    I knew the bride once. She was one of my best friends when I was in middle school. I remember attending her softball games in the summer heat, running the bases on an unlit, abandoned field after a win, screaming wildly. We would kick up the dust of the diamond and watch it sail into the humid nights of our unencumbered youth.
    As we entered high school in suburban St. Louis, we drifted apart. I stuck with band and my new friends met there while she pursued other endeavors — but we always remained friendly towards one another.
    She works in a large metropolitan hospital now, a successful nurse, while I moved to, what I would have called in my younger years, "the country" to write.
    Life has taken us down two very different roads. It's almost scary to think how quickly time has transpired since we kicked up dust on a softball field, chasing dreams into the night.
    My other closest middle school friends have scattered throughout the country. One moved to California to teach, another is working on a Master's Degree at MU and a third attended seminary in New England.
    As I get older, time just seems to accelerate. I can't remember what happened in September, because it seems to simultaneously have passed in the blink of an eye and existed several years ago in the fibers of my memory.
    It churns my stomach to know that starry-eyed freshmen I met as a senior in college are headed out into the real world in just a few short months, and my college legacy — I give myself a little too much credit here — will die with their graduation.
    On a more macro level, I have a hard time processing that sooner rather than later, most professional athletes will have a birth certificate newer than my own. That pitching phenom Michael Wacha won a World Series game a few days ago at the tender age of 22 makes me think about what I was doing at age 22. The thought alone makes me slump in my chair with a sigh.
    Learning to deal with the passage of time has been a craft for which no one can really prepare, and certainly not one that I've met with much dexterity.
    Page 2 of 2 - It's all too tempting to look back in time at the lives of others in relation to one's own and compare a laundry list of accomplishments — marriage, children, being hired for a dream job, buying the first home, winning a special award or recognition, etc.
    I find myself falling into this pitfall of hindsight from time to time.
    But I've decided I could lament the fact that time has flown away just as easily as the dust in the wind when I was in middle school asking the "what ifs?", or I could look back and hold tight to precious memories in the context of the precise moment in time in which they occur, choosing to not let them define my present or my future.
    If I don't do that, before I know it, life will be like the dirt kicked up in summer 2002. Gone.
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