“If you leap awake in the mirror of a bad dream/And for a fraction of a second, you can’t remember where you are/Just open your window and follow your memory upstream/To the meadow in the mountain where we counted every falling star” an excerpt from the song, "Father and Daughter" -by Paul Simon
Let us follow our memories upstream amidst the shimmers of light of our grandfathers, fathers, sons and father figures whose legacies gift our lives from one generation to the next.
Personally, I never had the good fortune to meet either my maternal or paternal grandfather because they both died before I arrived here. Nevertheless, on an intuitive level I feel I have known them through little idiosyncrasies, mannerisms, and quirkiness of love displayed in my parent’s actions. My curiosity is fueled by clues discovered in old family photos, stories and the breadcrumb trails uncovered by genealogy sleuthing.
I can’t help but wonder about the seemingly invisible yet palpable influences our ancestors have on our lives. Beyond any conscious awareness our grandparents’ values are passed on to us through our parents. Although we continually change and evolve over time, the significant contributions of our elders cannot be underscored. I find it a lovely thought to contemplate.
As children much of what we learn is through osmosis by what we observe and the meaning we find in our experiences. Images flutter in my mind of a young girl perched on the knee of my father, of the security of belonging to a clan of three girls and three boys; known in community as the Sorensen family, of my grandmother, cousins, aunts and uncles nearby, and of my father’s generous hospitality and propensity for happiness when surrounded with a house full of company.
Life circles, children metamorphoses into parents, bear sons and daughters who in turn may experience the miracle of birthing new life and eventually encounter joy in grand parenting. In the seasons of love, it is inevitable that we may climb exquisite peaks as well as fall into the depths of sorrow. Yet, amidst all the changing landscapes, the One constant, is Love.
“I believe the light that shines on you will shine on you forever/And though I can’t guarantee there’s nothing scary hiding under your bed/I’m gonna stand guard like a postcard of a golden retriever/And never leave ‘til I leave you with a sweet dream in your head” -Excerpt from the song "Father and Daughter" by Paul Simon
~liz Sorensen Wessel
Note: mandala drawing by ~liz
Please enjoy this delightful song by Paul Simon called "Father and Daughter"