Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Melody Brings Back A Memory

I have so many, very good memories from when I was a child. Sometimes I let my self think back to when I was very young and my parents were together. And my brother was my protector from frogs and big dogs (at the time that's all I was afraid of. Not now! I'm afraid of everything.) Reminiscing makes me happy, most of the time.

My mom used to tell me that when I was a baby, my brother (who is 2 years older than me) would pull me around and tell everyone that I was his baby. Is that not the sweetest thing?!

I remember always looking up to my brother. And I listened to everything he said to me. His words were absolute truth to me. Of course, as I got older he used that to his advantage. I remember, one day during the summer, and mom was at work, him asking me to make him a sandwich. I told him I wouldn't do it, so he held his breath and made his face red. I thought he was going to die without air! So I ran to the kitchen and made him a sandwich. Now I know he was just puffing his cheeks out and still breathing from his nose. I was 6, okay?

Anyway, I have all these good and funny memories. And when I ask him now, "Hey, do you remember that time.....?" he always says, "Nah, I don't guess I remember that." Sometimes he will laugh about what I tell him. As if to say that's funny, I wish I did remember, but other times he'll just look away as if I'm telling him someone else's stories.

It's frustrating. And it's heartbreaking. My brother, who I spent all of my life with, doesn't remember the things that made us who we are. Whether good or bad, we went through them together, and now it feels like I went through it alone. He doesn't remember the things that happened or the outcomes.

And how sad is it for him? To not remember playing little league baseball or going to a party as a teenager? Or planning for all the kids in the neighborhood to sneak out and meet in the woods, only to fall asleep? (Yes, he actually did this and we looked for him all night long....while he slept!)

I just have to wonder: is it his illness? Or has he chosen to forget everything because it all led up to him having an illness? Or as we get older, do memories fail us?

I've heard that a melody brings back a memory. If that's true, I sure wish I knew what songs we heard during those really good days.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Staring is Still Rude

Sunday night I wanted to eat Mexican for dinner. My husband and I had been in New Orleans all weekend and I'd had all the Cajun food I could handle. I love Mexican food and everyone agreed it would be good. So we set out to our favorite Mexican restaurant. It's a little further from our house but the food is worth the extra drive.

We pull into the parking lot and I tell my husband they look closed. I'm so confused because I'm sure we've eaten here on Sundays in the past. Once we pull a little closer to the building we see it is completely empty! I mean no tables, no seats, no cash register, nada.

So, I pull as close to the door as I can and my husband gets out to read a tiny paper sign that is taped to the door. It reads: Do to circumstances beyond our control, we are closed for business.

What?! NOOO!! Aw man, we loved that place. So many dates in the beginning of our relationship were at this very place. Total sad face.

Well, we're resilient creatures. We decide to go to another Mexican restaurant, even further from the house.

We get there and guess what...they're closed! Not for good, only for Sunday, but still. We're starting to think we'd better go get some frozen burritos from Winn Dixie and head to the house!

Well, we try one more place (which is my favorite) and alas! They're open!! Now here is where I should've said "I told ya" to my husband but I'm starving and I'm not as quick as normal.

We go in and order, eat some chips, and realize it is taking a very long time to get our food. Finally it comes out and I'm so full of chips and salsa that I haven't any room for the fajita taco salad I wanted so badly at the beginning of our quest.

So, we get to-go boxes and wait on the check. And wait. And wait. Finally, my brother and I decided to go outside while my husband waits. I wanted to smoke and he wanted to dip. (I know, nasty habits!) I get done smoking and start the truck so it will warm up. My brother is standing at the front of my truck dipping.

A young man gets out of his truck to the left of me and meets a young lady that parked to the right of me. As he walks, he is staring at my brother. Like, really staring with a strange look on his face. He keeps walking forward but continues to turn around and look at my brother. He sees me in my truck and tells the young lady something, then she turns around and stares at my brother.

All this time, I'm watching from my truck, wondering what they are looking at. Why are they staring at my brother and what was so odd about it that he mentioned it to the girl? I almost get out and ask if there is a problem but they walk inside.

I don't know what happened. I don't think my brother was mumbling to himself, it didn't look like it to me. I don't think he said anything to them, he was really looking at another truck that had pulled in the lot. He told me when he got in the truck that it was really nice.

So, I'd like to ask you, if you see something strange or different, is it ok to stare? When we were young, that's one of the first things our parents taught us - don't stare, it's rude. Staring is rude. It was 33 years ago and it still is today.

I was so upset about the staring and whispering that I almost forgot about my husband inside waiting for the check! The rest of the night it just bothered me so bad that these people who know nothing about us looked at us as if we were about to rob a bank or didn't belong at that restaurant.

Maybe I was just being especially emotional. Or maybe they are just rude. I guess we'll never know.