This morning I had an agenda. It involved working on a long term writing project and making specific plans around the wedding of our middle son, Chris. As I sat down ready to forge ahead, this caught my eye:
In my writer’s workshop, I keep some of my stuff in this old cardboard pencil box. Scissors, pens, post it notes and matches to light my candle currently fill it up. This is the first day that I have had it open long enough to notice the name that follows “This Box Belongs to:”. In case you can’t read it, it says Christopher, written in a rainbow of colors. It is amazing that with all of the purging that happened around our recent move, this box remains. There was nothing intentional about choosing it to hold my necessities. I think it just happened to be at the right place at the right time. I sure am glad.
Christopher is now mostly called Chris and in less than ten weeks will be a married man. He lived most of his childhood smack in the middle of two brothers and had a temperament and personality that could sometimes be overlooked. I hear that happens to many a middle child.
With the exception of a few bumps in the midst of middle school, he was an almost constant joy and delight. Just like the rainbow colored Christopher above, he brought different colors and ways of thinking and experiencing life into our family. His broad spectrum of interests from dolphins to Harry Potter to the outdoors spiced up our lives and kept us from being too mundane.
A few years ago, we ran into one of Chris’s all time favorite teachers, then known as Ms. Watts, now Ms. S. Christopher had a very difficult 3rd grade year and needed nurturing and to know that he was a loved and valued child. Fourth grade teacher Ms. Watts delivered in every way. At this serendipitous reunion, Ms. S told Chris that she had saved a special project he had done when in her class. It was well over ten years ago, and she wanted him to have it.
About a year later, I was running in and out of a store, and as I approached my car, Ms. S came up to me. She expressed how happy she was to run into me and that in the trunk of her car was the promised project. It was a little tattered and torn, but she was so delighted to pass this back to our son. Wow. The power of a devoted and caring teacher… After sharing it with Chris, I saved it and moved it from place to place with the intention of putting it back together and gifting it back to Christopher. This is how it looks today:
Some days, the pathway of how to best spend our time just rolls out before us. In fact, I believe that every day this is a possibility if we open our heart eyes and take in the whispering invitations all around. Today, I accept the invitation to fully enjoy and take in the experience of remembering and celebrating the gift to our family of Chris/Christopher. It is time to put “Ten Years of Christopher” back together. The next several hours will be spent soaking in the memories as well as hopes for this artistic and creative soul that was sent to our family over 26 years ago. And then onto planning celebrations as you create your very own family. It is such a privilege to be your mom, Christopher. I love you dearly.