Here I am at my beloved Platte River.
Though I haven’t lived in Holdrege for 40 years, I still feel its home to where I’m going when I’m headed Nebraska-way. “Holdrege. It’s a good place to be from,” as one of my classmates reflected.
I lived an idyllic small-town childhood, protected and nurtured by a loving family and a community that knew me, for better or worse. I had a place in it, but I suppose it is this that pushed me away. I wanted to be someone on my own terms. I wanted to shape my own life in my own way.
We talked about how even though you may want to escape your past, you realize belatedly, that its imprint is deep. Now, after all these years, I accept that the choices I make are informed by my birth place, by my parents who are long gone, and by neighbors, teachers, and ministers who taught and watched over me. I have not escaped, nor do I want to anymore.
The 40th somehow seemed more poignant than the 30th. I’m more mindful of the years ahead, rather than those ever-so-fleeting years behind. I believe it is true that time speeds up as we grow older. The long-ago childhood summer seemed endless, the school year even longer. Today, the summer passes in a moment; the year is gone in a blink of an eye.
Now, more than ever, it seems important to live as best I can. Because, you just never know…. I want to laugh with my grandson, hang out in the hammock with my husband, enjoy good food and wine and friends. I want to work hard; I want to play with abandon. And that includes weaving and messing around with yarn.