My daughter and her fiance lived with me for a month recently while on their way to Florida and their new jobs. Having her around so much was a blessing and it made me think of this note in “Notes To My Kids” while we all in the pool together.
To Roger and Jane:
When both of you were little, we spent a lot of time with MeeMaw and Granddad Tom in their pool in Gainesville. On many hot afternoons, we were in that big, grand pool, splashing around and diving into the deep end. Your grandparents would hold you when you were little and could not swim on your own. Later you were wrapped in a life jacket when you could float without them always hanging on. I was there, too, as were your mom and cousins. But most of all, I remember the joy you had with them on so many days until MeeMaw sold the house after your granddad died. Many good and wonderful memories came from that pool with everyone there. They are still in my mind and in the pictures of you two as well.
Those fun and happy times lived on with me over the years. Many times I would think back on what we did in that pool and wish they would return. Of course, I would have to buy a house with a pool to make that wish come true.
When I was looking for my current house, I looked at more than one, none of which caught my eye or interested me even some. But when I saw the Aransas Trail house, I had to buy it. It wasn’t just the game room or the beautiful park down the hill, but it was as much the pool in the back. I instantly imagined us in that pool, splashing around and having some fun, just like we did when you were little in Gainesville. I bought the house, which I am still in today, and waited for the hot summer so we could all get in.
And that we did. That first summer, now eleven years gone, was spent in that pool. You were bigger then, but it was still like before in a way because all of us were in a pool. We would swim around, Jane would sunbathe, and Roger would dive in. I would guzzle some beer, and you had some cokes. We snacked on some chips and swam around some more. After getting waterlogged and sunburned, we would get out and dry off and return at night or the next day in the sun. Once more on those days, we were in the water having some fun. Each summer we got in was just like we did before at Gainesville and that long-gone pool.
Now that you are grown, we don’t get in the pool as much as we did. You both are grown and not over as much these days. The pool is still there, the pump is always on, and the water swirls around the kidney shaped sides in silence most of the time. If my pool was like a person, would it be lonely without us in it? Would it be sad without all three of us swimming around?
Being there alone, I wish you two were there, but I try to not get lonely because I see a day when you two will be back as before. Not just with me, but maybe with a spouse and my yet- to-be-born grandkids. Maybe one day hence, when I am old, there will be some little ones in my pool with me, just like you were with my dad and me. That way the flowing water of the stages of our lives will circle around and find us gathered together once more. That way, the pool won’t be lonely anymore and be filled with a laughing and splashing family once again.