Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Celebrating Life

It’s been awhile since I indulged my blog. This past summer, I visited family in Michigan and Arizona. July was busy with a Leisure Learning writing course at McNeese State that spurred my creative juices. In between I researched markets and contests, learning Duotrope idiosyncrasies and submitting some short fiction pieces.

I’ve written before that I’m time challenged. For those of you who have an orderly mind, it’s a gift. For the rest of us, time is slippery. Today, as I wrote the date in my journal—Aug. 20th, it hit me in the face. It’s our son, Clay’s, birthday. He would be thirty-seven.

I do remember that hot August in ’77. My mom and mother-in-law both traveled from Michigan to take care of our three-year-old son and me after the baby’s birth. There was a huge rain storm that week, and I recall watching a man paddle a canoe down our street while I stood at the window and watched, cradling Clay. Our first flood together.

There were other storms: twenty-some stitches down an arm after scaling a chain link fence, broken down cars, no date for the prom, the only grade below A in typing, normal life with a sensitive over-achiever.

Twenty-three-years old, Clay lived and worked in Houston for only a few months before the city was devastated by a massive flood. I remember anxiously watching scenes on TV of highway underpasses clogged with water. A familiar ten lane freeway reduced to a drainage ditch. Clay survived the high water, but a few weeks later we were summoned to Houston for another storm.

Encephalitis was the diagnosis, but with no known cause. The doctors treated the symptoms for 2 ½ months before we were forced to concede. His flood was over.

It’s been 13 years – where does time go? Many good memories packed away, many life experiences richer. Thank you, Clay. Happy Birthday.