October 25, 2009

on the things I miss...

I miss waking up to my little sister's smiling face as she quietly sneaks lip gloss off of my bedside table. Her big blue eyes, her tiny, gap-toothed grin. The cat, running inside as someone makes their way out the garage door, rushing down the stairs and under the covers to warm my feet with her soft fur. The comfort and familiarity of my old room - the books on the shelf, my bulletin board, the drawer that held all my journals, the jewelry box that was filled with trinkets and other tiny bits of my past. The ring a boy had given me at the rollerskating rink when I was nine, a tiny bag of lost teeth that my mom kept as a reminder of the child I used to be, the tiny gold locket that no longer fit around my neck, mismatched earrings.

I miss the drive to the local apple orchards every Autumn. The magic of the turning leaves and the sweetness of fresh apple cider. Carving pumpkins on a newspaper-covered kitchen table, our sweaters scrunched up over our elbows, pretending we hated the feel of the slimy pumpkin seeds but secretly loving it. Dressing up for Halloween and begging mom to draw eyelashes and freckles on our faces no matter what we were dressed up as. Candy stashes that lasted for weeks afterwards.

I miss the smell of snow in the air. Waking up to an extra bright glow outside my window and knowing even before opening my eyes that the world had changed overnight. Soft nightgowns that puffed up as I stood over the kitchen vent in the morning to warm my toes. Snow angels and snowmen. That familiar burn in the tips of my fingers after hours spent in the cold weather. That familiar mug of hot chocolate as my sisters and I sat in the kitchen to thaw - our cheeks rosy, our hair matted and messy from the earmuffs, scarves and hats. My dad crumpling up newspaper and chopped wood to build a fire in the evening, filling the room with a comforting glow. The stack of books we knew by heart, the ones that made their annual appearance with each changing season and holiday.

I miss the familiar things. The things I knew would always be there and never even thought of missing someday - because, in a typical childlike way, I guess I never imagined things would ever be any different than they were. They were the things I had grown to expect. Daily laughter with my sisters. Hugs from my dad before going to bed. Fresh huckleberries on top of vanilla ice cream. My mom brushing the tangles out of my hair. Grilled cheese sandwiches and pumpkin chip muffins. The soft voices from down the hallway as my mom and older sister talked at night while I lay in bed, curled up and cozy. Feeling safe, feeling like I was exactly where I needed to be.

These are the things that make it hard to ever really grow up.

Although my present place in life is absolutely wonderful, part of me will always feel like that little girl. Maybe it's because I miss how, back then, I never questioned what I should be doing, or where I should be, or if I was the person I was supposed to be. I just...was. And I miss that security.

49 comments :

  1. What a wonderful post. It made me reminisce back to my childhood with my sisters as well. Things change so fast sometimes.

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  2. Awww, I love this, Kerri. I live only a few minutes from my parents house and even when I leave our weekly dinners, sometimes I tear up because I just want to somehow shrink down and stay there, a little girl again, when everything was safe and okay. This definitely made me cry. Sending you a big hug today, sweet girl

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  3. gosh this made me cry too...this is beautiful and i can relate to every word- especially the last paragraph. so incredibly insightful.

    xo

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  4. This is beautiful, Kerri.

    And now I miss my parents crumpling newspaper and throwing logs onto our fireplace. (Ironically, my house in FL had a fireplace but my house in AK does not. Something about people burning down base housing. Lame. )

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  5. See, I feel this way sometimes, but mostly I can't wait to create that sort of life with my OWN little family, you know?

    Peeking into Talia's life makes me feel like having my own children will almost be like reliving my childhood.

    But this time? No one tells me when to go to bed.

    Score.

    (Mike and I talk about how we want to have kids just so we can get a van with a DVD player and go to Chuck E Cheese without people raising their eyebrows.)

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  6. This is so beautiful- and I'm with Ashley, I want to create that my my children, especially since I only got those memories until I was six & then my parents split up. Your wishbabies will have the most idyllic childhood imaginable someday- and you'll get all of this again =)

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  7. Lovely! I, too, wish to shrink back to childhood some days. There really is no place like home.

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  8. Beautiful! It brings back some of my own memories. Even though I still live close to my family, there is nothing like childhood memories.

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  9. I love this!
    I agree with Ashley and Kyla... I cannot wait to have children someday so that they can ponder this type of childhood when they are around 20 or 30.

    I am so excited to begin a family and start those traditions and so forth.
    I love the memories I have and cannot wait to provide those to my own little kiddies. =D

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  10. I should not have read this post in my current emo state. I'm all blubbery again. You are such an amazing writer, Kerri!

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  11. Awww, Kerri. How is it possible that you put in words thoughts that are in my head?

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  12. Oh darling, this sounds like my brain at this exact moment. I feel your pain... I'm 1200 miles from my homestate, and I'm missing the greatest season ever! Not to mention my entire family and the familiarities of home. This is just what I needed today

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  13. "Although my present place in life is absolutely wonderful, part of me will always feel like that little girl. Maybe it's because I miss how, back then, I never questioned what I should be doing, or where I should be, or if I was the person I was supposed to be. I just...was. And I miss that security."

    Perfectly said.

    Great post.

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  14. Ah, these are the things I love about fall and winter - my favorite time of year! It's such a special time, really.

    I feel the same way about being home and every now and then I need to leave my home with Mike for a few days and feel like a kid again with my mom. I always sleep the best there too, I think there's a comfort level about being home that helps you to relax and just be.

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  15. During my first two years of college, I would often feel this way when I lived 2 hours away from home.

    also, this made me choke up a bit because, although I still live with my parents, there is NOTHING like those moments spent as a child. the littlest things brought such comfort and joy (the "little things" still do but in a completely different way).

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  16. I love these memories from childhood. My own was filled with many similar things and it was wonderful.

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  17. What a great post about your childhood. Made me nostalgic... for my own childhood.

    My childhood was of course different, but we share the fondness of memories.

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  18. awh, sweetie. i feel this way too. i like having my own life and doing my own thing, but there is nothing like waking up in your own bed on christmas morning. even if "your own bed" isn't even the same bed you grew up with and you've been sleeping in not-your-own-bed (then who the hell's bed is it?!) for several years.

    and there's nothing like a good mom-fix. :)

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  19. Love this. What a wonderful post. I've been reminiscing about my childhood recently as well. Things were so much simpler then, weren't they?

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  20. This was an amazing post. So many childhood memories pop into my head as I set up my own home. You have such a talent with words - I could imagine myself in those memories, and just feel the surrounding love and warmth.

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  21. I won't even try to say it better than you did, but I can say I understand EXACTLY how you feel. I often struggle with how much I took for granted the feelings of childhood. I just thought that life was always that way. And as happy as I am in my marriage, I still find myself constantly questioning...constantly unsettled... a feeling that I never once felt growing up. Life just... was. And it was great. And I defintiely echo the sentiment of others that I can't wait to experience all of that again with my own family, but there is definitely something that I feel I need to settle or accomplish before I get there. Anyways, thanks for this post, Kerri. It's amazing to know that there is actually someone out there who I I've never met, who's never met me, who can put into words the same exact things I'm feeling.

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  22. And, I'm crying.

    I've often thought about how, when you are younger, all you do is look forward to being older, and now that I'm "older," I spend so much time missing the little things that made childhood so special and comforting. It's still hard for me to accept that I'll never be back to that safe place again.

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  23. I want to go there, definitely.

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  24. This is absolutely wonderful. It reminds me of so many things I miss from my childhood. I know exactly what you mean. I think about this all that time.

    On another note, and I have wanted to say this many times before, you should write a book. I cannot believe that someone as talented as you is not already charging for her beautiful work. You have such a talent, and a true talent for writting is very hard to come across. I would read your book in a heartbeat. I hope you think about it, even a little.

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  25. What an amazing post and absolutely the way I feel this very morning. This morning I am feeling rather overwhelmed by adult life and this was the perfect thing to read. A huge thank you. xx

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  26. what a heart-warming and cozy post. being a kid was great fun wasn't it? i think about my childhood in a similar light as you and miss it a bunch sometimes.. then i think how thankful i am to know, from my parent's example, how to be a great parent who can create that kind of safe and loving environment for my kids one day. i'll bet our parents had just as much fun raising us as we did being raised, and while we've got to be grown up now,it will be great fun to parent one day! Thanks for being true K!

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  27. I felt like I was right there with you through most of this post, drinking hot cocoa, hearing my parents chat down the hall as I fell asleep, the sounds of the house that I grew up in. Such a vivid post and like you, I often miss being a little kid again not worrying about what this & that meant, or I should handle this situation. We just did. I'm going to hug my parents twice as much later as a result of this post. Hugs & love to you, my dear.

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  28. I want to give these moments to my children some day as I have never had the opportunity to experience childhood in a typical American way. And part of that makes me wish I was born here. But don't get me wrong. I love Germany and my family there.

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  29. You are seriously inspiring me to take a trip to the northwest, it sounds lovely! Being from South Florida, I know nothing about apple orchards or blankets of fresh snow. :)

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  30. Love this. I know how you feel. I think its so hard being away from family, no matter how old you get. When you live near family, its easier to hold onto the child inside of you... but when you're far away... its like that little girl is further away than she's ever been. Also with just having a baby, its also makes me miss my family even more. But unfortunately, I will likely never live in the same town as them again. And its heart breaking to really think about that.

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  31. Thank you, Kerri, that was inspirational to me as a dad. That's an amazing picture of a wonderful childhood and I hope that my little girls will think the same kinds of things when they are grown up.

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  32. I so felt that way when I moved out of my parents' home. I cried myself to sleep several times, realizing that I was not sleeping in a home where anyone really loved me. I think it's pretty normal to feel this way as we grow up, but I hardly ever feel it now that I'm a Mom with four kids of my own. They're my normal now.

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  33. I'm with Lamont...I hope that I am creating memories for my little ones...that those little things I do as a mommy, that I don't think that much about right now, will always remind them of love and of home.

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  34. I definitely miss it, I often see a lot of kids with their parents eating ice creams in the malls or watching movies and I instantly transported to the old time. They're at the bad place with each other right now so I definitely hold on to those childhood memories.

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  35. this just made me cry. i am blaming it on a combination of being homesick & the swine flu. wonderful writing.

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  36. aw, honey.... <3 <3

    now you've gone and made me all nostalgic and a wee bit achy for all those wonderful things I remember about living with my family in the Midwest.

    But I loved what Ashley said-- when you have your own children, it does rather help, because all those lovely things you loved so much from when you were a girl?? You can make them a part of YOUR kids' lives. And I have a feeling that it's your love of and heart for all these sorts of thing you so beautifully wrote about here that are going to help make you an AMAZING mom. :)

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  37. you are a beautiful writer...i envy that childhood! good for you sweet girl!

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  38. I started reading this post yesterday and had to stop, I was tearing up so much. I was in the airport on my way 'home' after visiting my sister for the weekend. I love being grown-up with an apt, job & a husband of my very own but I really do miss being a little girl with my sisters! Thank you for your post. xoxo

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  39. so as always i enjoyed your post! don't know if you're a fan of the whole "tag" thing, and i imagine you get them a lot... but i thought i would love to read your responses to one i was recently tagged with. so i am tagging you! either way, love your blog!
    http://adventure986.blogspot.com/

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  40. Hi, this is my childhood too. And I miss it immensely.

    Sometimes I wish there was a way to take us all back there, just for a day.

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  41. Sounds like a magical childhood! Very beautifully written as usual, dear.

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  42. I never want to grow up and still feel like the best time of my life was as a child playing on my childhood homes property with lots of room to play, run and imagine. Wonderful.

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  43. What a beautiful post. I'm new here and what a lovely thing to read for my first time. I miss the magic that was Christmas Eve when I still believed in Santa!

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  44. This is a beautiful post. Just think, one day you'll be making all of those memories all over again, only this time you'll be giving them to your children.

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  45. The approaching holidays make me miss my childhood, too.

    This is a beautiful post, and it made me smile.

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  46. 25 is an odd year...
    teetering between "kid" and "not kid", finding your place in the world, and making a life...

    and for some reason we all thought we'd have all the answers by then.

    I guess it all just falls in place one day when you're least expecting it.

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  47. I love this post. There are so many sweet things to miss from childhood, the home where we grew up, old friends, old memories.

    Beautifully written.

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