I fell down a rabbit hole of memory because I went searching for the word “muffin.” It began when my son remembered aloud that I used to bake muffins that were the color of the mushrooms in the Mario games on our Nintendo system. I remembered the existence of the muffins. I remembered being pleased at how much like the mushrooms I was able to make them look, complete with white spots. Yet I could not remember how I did it. So I searched for the word “muffin” here on One Cobble at a Time to see if I blogged about my mushroom muffin process. I did not, but an array of other entries came up which included the word muffin. It was a sampling of the life of my family across years. I loved reading about events that I no longer remember, getting glimpses of the people my children used to be. I captured moments so beautifully with my words, and felt a twinge of sadness that I don’t do that in the same way anymore. I don’t tell the small stories of the lives of the people in my household, mostly because their stories are no longer mine to tell. Young children and their stories are in the care of their parents. I had to capture the day of my four year old because if I did not the memory would be lost to him as well as me. Teenagers and adults must choose their own remembering and forgetting.
But I think I could catch more moments than I have been. Like the quietness of my house on a Sunday afternoon, the sounds of Howard playing online with some friends. Similar sounds come muffled from the basement where my 24yo is doing the same. The 21yo and the 18yo are both sprawled in chairs reading fanfic on their phones. The younger cats have posted up next to windows to watch for the blue jays who come to scream at them sometimes. Old lady kitty has found a sunbeam to warm her dark fur. All is calm and content. I suppose there are houses where this sort of “everyone doing their own thing” looks like withdrawal, but the readers are in public spaces rather than hidden away in their rooms. The office door is open. And if one of us wanders into the kitchen, the smell of cooking food is likely to summon others. Then we will talk. It is comfortable to co-exist in a house full of adults. The contrast to the life revealed by my muffin search is significant. I remember that life fondly, I’m glad to be in this one now. In part because the transition from Family with Small Children to Family of Adults required crossing a dark and rocky terrain of Family of Teens Who Are All Melting Down with Mental Health Issues Simultaneously. So I gaze fondly across the gap at the memories I caught in words. Then I be glad I am in today.