As our tiny little company expands from the five of us that started out in 2000 to the 19 of us now, we've had to adjust some things along the way. When it was just a few of us, our "company calendar" was just Bossman or I calling or emailing where the hell we would be. We eventually moved to a "Travel Calendar" that would say when people would be out of the office, but now with double digit employee numbers that one calendar has been packed with dentist appointments and vacations and conference calls. We have started to move over to sharing our personal calendars with each other and using that to know if someone will be in the office or available. This means that we need to tidy up the items that are in our personal calendars so that not every employee needs to necessarily know what embarrassing thing someone had removed from which body part at the doctor's office. I have always been a pack rat. I come by it naturally. Squirreling away digital items seemed harmless enough until I realized I had an awful lot of junk filling up the calendar, all of which were non-private, all of which marked me as "busy" and many of which had no relevance anymore.
Over the last few days, I've been tidying my calendar. As I went back in time, I found bits of my life I had completely forgotten about. My last day of work at Virginia Tech was on June 9, 2000. The following week (June 16) Jeremy and I picked up the Ryder truck to drive all our possessions across the state to start a new job and a new life. By March of 2002, we were in a trial separation and by April I had moved out. Shortly after that he took his first extended trip to California to visit his father. And then suddenly I was buying a new Mini Cooper and a house (the one we just moved out of) and going to Vegas with Rich and introducing him to my friends from high school at my reunion.
Had you asked me before yesterday if Jeremy had ever had surgery, I would have told you no. But right there in my calendar it was telling me he had gone under the knife on April 3, 2000. Suddenly the memory of being in the Christiansburg house with poor Jeremy so miserable after having his gall bladder removed all came back to me. This is why I write things down. This is why I blog. I don't want to lose these little reminders.
About a month ago, my father said he's been going through a "mid-life crisis" in that he is trying to appreciate Mom more and remember all the reasons he is so lucky to have her. At 67, I'm not sure he understands the definition of a mid-life crisis and how it involves a lot more sports cars and a lot less time sitting at the kitchen table with his wife reminiscing about the last 40 years. Mom says that they've been trying to remember all the details of their lives, the stories and analogies that have woven through our family and their marriage. She says they don't both remember all the same things and sometimes they remember them differently, but they are both surprised at how much they do recall if the other prompts a memory.
My mother was at the house today using my computer and we were picking out photos from my Flickr photostream to have printed for her. All of a sudden she said, "You know today is my Daddy's birthday. I'm not sure if Sissy or Jack remember that, but I thought about it with Helen's babies being born today. Maybe Helen would like to know her babies share a birthday with her grandfather." My mother's father had a heart attack and died when my mother was 19. I never met him and only know him from her stories and some photos of him with a lot of grease in his thick black hair. My mother was a Daddy's girl and in many ways I am myself. But it saddened me that he was fading out of our family as Mom's siblings didn't talk much about their father and we grandkids never met him. Perhaps instead of Helen's twins being Christmas babies, it was more important for them to share a birthday with their grandfather who would have been so pleased to be there for the occasion and share his day with them.
For my part, I'm going to add another reminder in my calendar for all the important birthdays that are today.