On Memorial Day I went to the cemetery to put a flag on my daddy's grave, like I do for most holidays. As I was leaving and wiping away tears, I looked down at his foot stone, and it read: Hugh Frederick Snell Sr., US Army World War II, Dec. 1 1922 - Nov. 30, 1997. Purple Heart/Bronze Star Medal. I took a second glance and then I found myself smiling. That 'dash' represented his whole life!
Yep, that little line carved in stone, was everything he accomplished, loved, liked, regretted, lessons he learned, defeats which made him humble and basically the wonderful man that he was! It didn't seem fair, almost like he was being "jipped" in a way. Then I started reflecting on my own life.... What would my 'dash' represent, what would I want it to represent?? Then it hit me, it's not up to me what it means, it's up to all those who know me as to what it will represent. I live my life and all those who have been a part of my life, my 'dash' will mean different things, MANY different things hopefully. I pray that I have a ways to go before I will need it, so I can put more eventful memories there.
Take a moment and think about your 'dash'.... where you were born, where you were raised, childhood friends, boyfriends/girlfriends, school, marriage, kids and grandkids. We're blessed with each day, however most of us , including myself, cruise through the day with out normal routines. Not realizing that we didn't pay much attention to what was going on around us.
We could be missing something amazing, well at least exciting enough to be part of your 'dash'. Some, are perhaps, more blessed than others. Depending on how you look at it. Like big houses, fancy cars and nice vacation destinations. I try not to look at it that way. A roof over your head, a car that gets you from point A to point B, and sunshine on your face... And of course health! Just these things should make anyone happy and blessed.
I knw a few things that I would see in my 'dash': my childhood, first time I got up on water skies (it only took about 15 times, lol), riding the dirt roads with friends, Daytona Beach 1982, Young Harris College - every moment, 2 month Europe trip, coming home from the Europe trip and marriage. Also, how no one really explained to me the whole "trials & tribulations" of marriage!! Ha. So many, many more things evidentially. If you were with me during these & other events, you know who you are, you too are a huge part of my 'dash' and I love you ALL!!! So next time you go visit your life ones, that have gone ahead of you, remember their dash and know what a big part you played in creating it. Then remember to make wonderful memories for your own 'dash'!! Much love to you and your families.
See y'all next month.
Mandy Snell is a freelance writer who enjoys writing about growing up in Snellville and its history. Have any Growing up in Snellville stories to share? Comment below!