I remember fishing trips with my family and pulling faces with my sister when Daddy would gut the fish. We used to chuck those fish, fresh from the sea, straight onto a bonfire on the beach.
Looking back on this memory now, two things stand out to me:
- It is my turn to create memories.
Somewhere along the line, I’ve become the adult. I’ve been given the awesome responsibility of creating happy childhood memories for my little Finn Bear. These days are all too fleeting… and will be gone before I know it. Perhaps next time I am faced with the dilemma of whether to finish pairing the socks (an impossible task anyways) or to steal the last hour of sun on the beach with my family, I should try and remember the value of memories and the warmth they will provide for years to come.
- It is the in-between moments that count.
My dad would probably disown me for saying this but, I reeeeeally don’t like fish. And I don’t think I ever did. But my dad’s love for fishing was right up there with his love for us, so I used to eat the stuff by the fistful just to make him cackle.
It never really mattered what we caught, because it was the experience as a family that was magical. In reality, our fishing trips were always shoddily organized and miserably wet but those are not the bits I remember. I remember singing “the tide is high but im hoooooldin’ on” with my cousins while dancing in the waves. I remember turning the bottom of my t-shirt up so that I could collect rocks and seashells, and then presenting my mother with my 25 favorites and having her “OOH” and “AHH” at every one. I remember the peaches-and-cream instant porridge that we ate for breakfast, and the way Momma would squeal when Dad pulled on her toes in the tent. I also remember stepping on a giant slug, which clung on to my bare foot for dear life and had to be scraped off with a stick, but that is neither here nor there.
The point I am trying to make, quite clumsily, is that I think the “good old days” don’t rely on any grand parental efforts, expense, or magnificent planning. I think it might just be about taking on new experiences as a family and not being afraid to get a bit sluggy. I mean silly. Sorry.
Sometimes, when things get a bit hard and I feel weighed down by the pressures of parenthood and adult life, I try to remind myself that these will be the good old days. We are living them right now.
And then I go and have some fun with my gorgeous boy. ♥