Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Making memories and a recycled CC

It's 0530 and I'm trying to figure out what I want to do with this post. There are a couple of things I want to explore, but before I get to that here is a link to Corpsman Chronicles II: Seven Seconds.


The other evening I experienced a profound revelation. It was a simple thing which most if not all of you kind readers would have seen and understood, yet I was blind to the concept before it worked its way through my jumbled thought processes. It was a happy moment and a healing moment.

The littlest was sitting on my lap. Her "watch videos on your phone" time had expired, and she was casting around for something to do. She decided she wanted to "play makeup," which is a favorite thing among many favorite things. She likes to tear around and roughhouse and play with cars and trucks too. When it comes to grit, determination, and toughness she eclipses 99 percent of the human population, which I find fascinating. The following video is from her second birthday party. Check out the tumble at 0:32. The first time I met her she did the same thing on the same table, only with more force. She really hit hard and there was bleeding involved. Alex was in the kitchen making dinner and I was mortified. The kids were in the living room with me and as the adult in the room I was responsible for their safety, was I not? Immediately after face planting the little one wanted to be picked up, and she tucked her face into my shirt for a few moments, but she refused to cry. When she looked up at me her eyes glistened with tears but she smiled and said, "I put blood on you shirt!"  

She's very tough, but she's all girl, too, which includes playing makeup.

She and Alex often played makeup "for reals" and I have beautiful memories of watching that loving interaction play out. It was a breathtaking experience to be fully a part of such moments.

Since Alex died the littlest often wants to play makeup. It's completely pretend of course, but she spends a lot of time making me up, applying "makeup" to my eyes and face with her fingers. She has me make her up too, but she's usually less interested in that. While the game is a happy one it's often brought with it a large component of missing and sadness, too. It's hard to explain because I don't have proper words to describe the emotional experience.

However, the other evening something clicked in my heart and I realized that we -- the littlest and I -- were adding to a continuity of memory. I think I had been afraid somehow that new memories could erase older memories and I would lose another part of Alex. That over time she would evaporate and waft away like smoke. I don't know why, exactly, but I had been taking the counsel of a phantom fear. Batshit crazy.

But then I realized it was okay, that my fears were groundless. I'll always long for what I can never have again, but what I do have is the greatest blessing of my life. God and Alex made magic flower in my soul. I have a feeling that a lot of people never get to experience such a thing.

I am blessed.


Now that you've waded through that, here's a link to an update on Seven Seconds.


Be well and embrace the blessings of liberty.


  1. If only they could somehow harness the energy of a two-year old!

  2. My admiration of you taking responsibility for raising those children is boundless. Whatever your reasons, and whatever your motivation, it is a noble thing you are doing.

    1. One of these days I'll be able to introduce you kind readers to the real noble people.

      Thanks Frank.

  3. Replies
    1. I get a lot of energy from just being around them. I don't think I could survive a straight dose of that stuff though!

      Thanks Skip.

  4. Great job with the kids. The oldest will be less of a fun child but more in need of good role modeling, which I know you will provide in a thoughtful manner as he copes with the cards he's been dealt. No better place to raise a kid than in the real world of a working ranch/farm/small town.

    Small world on the CC update. Thanks for finding that.
    John Blackshoe

    1. The kids are all incredibly amazing and incredibly different. The joy they bring to my world is beyond words. I can't begin to describe how remarkable and fantastic Alex's entire family are. I've literally never met such people before. I can't even approximate in words how blessed I am.

      Echoes from four decades past. Choosing to live and love. It's the right option I believe.

      Thanks John.

  5. What lovely memories you'll both have. She's fully accepted you, Shaun, heart and soul, and she'll always be Daddy's Girl.

    My Sweet Little Wife is far better at "Make Believe" play than I am, and just listening to her play with our grandson is an astounding thing. I play bit-parts in most of these little "plays" that they put on, costumes and all, but when he and I play we do different things, like with his building sets. That's where my type of imagination takes over, and instead of playing "Pirate", he's now an airplane pilot, race driver, or Famous Surgeon as we work on his "patient", one of those toys where you remove plastic organs from a plastic guy that resembles Fred Flintstone.

    We're seeing them learning a lot of different things, social interaction among them. It's pure joy to watch them grow, both physically and mentally.

    We're both blessed, Shaun.

    1. It's an amazing thing watching these little ones play and grow. They sure are teaching me important stuff!

      I agree drjim, we are both blessed. Thanks.

  6. I really have no idea how you did it,

    but you are.