The way to love anything is to realize that it might be lost. GKC
I took a book out from the library the other day.
When I got home and opened it, I found a folded piece of paper sticking between two pages, like a bookmark.
On the front of the paper was:
Curious (okay, nosey), I opened it. Inside was the word “Mom” written in a childish scrawl, and in another hand, "Thank you for taking me to the splashpad."
Maybe Colin's mom had been reading the book that day and stuck the note in the book, promptly forgetting it. Maybe she put it in the book for safekeeping, then without thinking returned it to the library.
I have many such pieces of my daughters' childhood tucked away. Notes, drawings, puzzle-piece jewelry, painted bottles, and so on. I have many of them stored in boxes. I periodically rediscover others as I search in drawers for the mates of socks, or when rummaging though my old receipts and bills and papers.
Whenever I find such forgotten treasures, I smile. I try to guess when they were created. I think of the love that went into writing or making them.
That's the value of such things. They are little patches of love. Together with the hugs and smiles, and, yes, tears, they are part of the quilt of love stitched together by our family over the years.
And now that the girls are gone to their own homes or college, that loving memory quilt keeps me warm.
Perhaps Colin's mom also has a collection of such things.
I plan to stick the note back in the book. I like to imagine that maybe Colin's mom will take out the book again and rediscover it, feeling the same flash of remembered happiness I experience when I find one of the girls' forgotten little gifts (even if I never do find that missing sock).
And even if Colin's mom never sees it again, perhaps some other book borrower will, and will be similarly inspired to remember all the gifts of love he or she has received.
The Secret People
2 weeks ago