The futility of rewriting history is not lost on me. Yet, I find myself occasionally indulging in the "what if's" of it all. Lately, I've been struck by the realization that if just one of the countless "thin threads" had been broken, my descendants might not exist today. There might still be children and even their children's children, but they would be strangers to the person I am today. As frivolous as it may seem, I can't help but ponder such possibilities.
Of all the "thin threads" that could have unraveled, the one that has haunted me most is the one that nearly snapped when Sheri declined an invitation to travel with my family to Mexico. I learned of her decision while working on the camper at my Uncle Ted's scrapyard shop, and my anger rendered me mute. But Sheri eventually relented, and thank goodness she did. Had she not, that thread would have surely rewritten our history. Her plan had been to reunite in New Orleans six months later, during Mardi Gras. It was a naive plan, but we were young and in love. Sheri promised to wear the fuzzy white "Good Will" coat that we both adored, so I could easily find her in the crowds. That sounds like a good plan, right?
But it wasn't until a couple of days ago that I realized the thin thread that nearly broke long before we repaired the camper. It was the fire that ravaged my home on Easter Sunday, an event that prompted my family to build a camper on an old army truck and embark on a journey to Mexico. When we returned to the US to renew our six month travel visas, we parked our homemade camper, "Mother", on a farm owned by our friends Corky and Margot in Western Washington for repairs and additions. While we were there, Sheri arrived in her VW camper van. I was 17 and she was 18, and before we left for another six-month visit to Mexico, we had fallen deeply in love. Our connection only grew stronger as we journeyed to Ziracuaretiro with the rest of the family. Though the story, "Seems so real" is written as fantasy, it contains true events from that trip and the time we spent on Corky's farm. Without the "Easter fire," I can hardly imagine a scenario that would have brought Sheri and me together. But 27 years and four children later, Sheri was taken from us. That is another story.
Sheri's birthday falls on this day, March 20, the first day of Spring. That seems somehow appropriate.