I’m starting to see a pattern here. I’d never been to Seattle prior to my 29 Days Until 29 journey, but I would like to go back and spend more time there. Seattle was a non-stop emotional rollar coaster, full of highs and lows, with some really good coffee, great music, and amazing people mixed in between.
My stop in Seattle marked the start of a serious internal audit and an opportunity for me to take inventory of the past month; the people, the events, the memories. To remember the moments, not the things. It started my Uncle Bob picking me up from the airport, one of mom’s younger brothers. I then met up with my old friend from UVA, Ali Marcus. Ali was there every day of my 1st year when I lost mom to cancer. Ali, Lo, Alli, Kel, and a whole bunch of other people in Echols dorm, were key emotional supporters during everything that I was going through that Spring. Many late nights were spent on someone’s floor just talking about random stuff in order to keep my mind off of things. I’m eternally thankful for them and for those memories.
We talked about all sorts of things: politics, the Pacific Northwest, cancer connections, and old friends. The whole time it felt as though we were still neighbors in Charlottesville. That’s what it’s like with good friends; it’s as though you never missed a beat. It was a GREAT afternoon. That night I had the chance to catch up with my Aunt and Uncle, Bob and Barbara. They were amazing hosts and cooked up an awesome meal as we relaxed at their beautiful home.
After dinner we sat down and listened to old records (real records – talk about an amazing sound!) while looking at old pictures of mom and trading stories. Bob has lost 3 of his siblings to cancer; the Wilson family is no stranger to this indiscriminate killer. We laughed and we cried as we stayed up way later than we should have creating yet another awesome memory that I’ll always carry with me.
The following morning we embarked on our ‘Touristy Adventure’ but the day started on a somber note: the Seattle Fire Department’s Fallen Firefighter Memorial. It was a moving ceremony and Seattle has an AMAZING monument to their falled firefighters. If you’re ever in the city you HAVE to check it out! After that I was led around on a VIP tour of all that Seattle has to offer; the 1st Starbucks, the Market, the flower stalls, the sky line, The Statue of Liberty; all of it! The whole time making memories and positive connections.
As I boarded the plane that afternoon and watched the sunset out over the wing of the jet on my way to Long Beach I couldn’t help but smile. This is what it’s all about. Cancer can take a lot of things away from us; our friends, loved ones, hair, strength, sometimes even our smiles, but it can’t take away our memories or our positive connections. Which leads me to ask: what memory did you make today?
If the answer is no, you still have time.
It’s as simple as telling someone you love that you love them.