Favorite Childhood Memory – Fishing in the Bathtub

Today is Aaron’s birthday.  He would have been 42 years old.  I thought I would honor the day by sharing one of our adventures together as children.

During the summer of 1988, my brother and I spent most of our free time exploring the woods and playing in a creek.

One day, we were hanging out in the woods and fishing.  We had a bucket full of fish, but it started to rain.  Neither one of us wanted to leave, since we were having so much fun.

I suggested we take the bucket of fish home and put the fish in our bathtub.  That way we could continue having fun while we were at the house.  Aaron thought it was a great idea, so that’s what we did.

My mom came home from work, as she passed by the bathroom, she saw Aaron sitting on the toilet with a fishing pole.  She went into the bathroom to find out what in the world her son was doing.

When mom looked into the bathtub, she went ballistic.  She started yelling at both of us to get those **** fish out of the there.

We put the fish back into the bucket and walked down the street.  We decided to release the fish in our neighbor’s pound.  Once we got home, Mom made us scrub the bathtub multiple times with several different cleaning solutions.

Personally, I think she may have overreacted just a little bit.

Pain and Life

To truly laugh, you must be able to take your pain and play with it.  (Charlie Chaplin) 

Find a place inside where there’s joy, and the joy will burn out the pain.  (Joseph Campbell)

Bad things do happen; how I respond to them defines my character and the quality of my life.  I can choose to sit in perpetual sadness, immobilized by the gravity of my loss, or I can choose to rise from the pain and treasure the most precious gift I have — life itself.  (Walter Anderson) 

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The Black Hole of Death

Today is Aaron’s birthday.  It should be spent having fun, singing, and laughing.  However, Aaron died three years ago.  There will be no signing or laughing today.

When Aaron died, I lost my brother, Gwen lost her father, and Mom lost her son.  His death created a black hole in our family.  This black hole creates a suction that drags feelings of joy and happiness into it’s abyss.  It only leaves feelings of despair and grief.

Our family will never be the same without Aaron.  His death will impact all of us for the rest of our lives.  I just wish we could somehow banish the black hole from our mist.  That we could learn to laugh and sing again.

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