Abby has taken up quite a significant rock collection. Scouring for the perfect smoothed pebble has become her favorite past time whenever we venture outside. Her hands are happiest when they can take an unlimited amount of time sifting through dirt and debris, her small grasp never quite big enough to hold them all.
Not only does she have many stones gathered in different sections across our drive, we’ve brought the best of the bunch inside. My mom was over the other day and noticed the overflowing bowl we store them in, along with a few dusty stragglers scattered on the floor. “Did you wash all those rocks when you brought them in?”, she asked.
“No”, I replied. “Why would I wash off rocks when I’m just going to throw them back outside when she gets tired of them?”
“Well, I used to wash your rocks when you brought them in”, she remarked, haughtily.
“No, you didn’t”, I disputed.
My mother was adamant in her insistence, though. “Yes, I did.”
This wasn’t our first trip down alternate paths of memory lane. I would like to say it stopped here. But like a pebble in water, it had a ripple effect. We went back and forth a bit more before the subject was changed, neither of us willing to budge on our recollection of events. It’s just every day rocks, after all. The preferred kind you can skip onto any pond. I wonder, however, how even the smallest grain of reflection against the resulting folds of reminiscence can skew in such contrast for a mother and daughter who have spent most of their life living alongside. And how, exactly, does that bode for how my children will remember me.