• March Blog Challenge •
Day 4: Favorite childhood memory
As I get older I realize just how fortunate I am in terms of my upbringing and the extremely close relationship I’ve always had with my family. Nobody ever treated me inappropriately or abused my trust– and it’s shocking and sickening hoe many people cannot say that. Save a few upsets and an unfortunate trip to Shiloh, my childhood would be considered ideal by most standards. I enjoyed normalcy, routine, and structure. My parents were attentive and involved and ensured our home was happy and safe. They set boundaries and established that above all else they were Mom & Dad, not my best buddy. Nobody pushed me into any activities and I had the freedom to pursue my own interests. Questions were always encouraged with answered given patiently. I never felt as though I was a source of irritation or excluded. Our extended family gathered frequently. The adults in my life were positive role models. We laughed a lot. Above all I felt loved, valued, and appreciated.
No one particular memory stands out as my favorite. Some of the best times I had were spent with my older cousins, Oliver and Gideon, so many of the fondest memories involve them. We went to movies together often. Major holidays and eagerly anticipated new releases had us in line at Malco, usually with my Dad. We went on road trips to Cookeville to see our relatives and learn fascinating information about our lineage. On one such trip we even snuck me into Spanky’s, but I’ll save that story for another day. I attended all of their graduations from both high school and college [and I know they would have done the same for me had I opted to participate such tedious ceremonies]. I had roles– printed in the program nonetheless!– in each of their weddings [and I would have done the same for them if my marriage ceremony wasn’t so ‘nontraditional’]. I love my cousins [and their awesome wives too] and am so blessed that they have been such a huge part of my life from childhood to the present day. I know our bond will continue for the rest of our lives and hope we pass it on through our children as well. Gideon and his wife have two sons [younger than Adam but older than Tatum] so the cousins are moving into the next generation….
Their separate college experiences contributed some exciting memories as well. My first concert was the Rolling Stones [how cool is that?!]. If not for Oliver and his friend from school sitting a few rows away, Mom and Aunt Sarah, my tickets to the show, might not have gone. I also got to witness a thrilling college football game [and that’s saying something because I’m apathetic to sports] between Tennessee & Arkansas– where the Vols beat the Razorbacks after SEVEN ROUNDS of overtime– which I never would have seen had Gideon not went to school at UT.
With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,