Posts Tagged ‘the past’

I am feeling particular affection for my past self today.

Earlier this year I needed to design and print multiple versions of a complicated spreadsheet. It was the sort of project that should have been easy but was a verifiable pain. After more time on it than I want to remember, I had my printouts finalized. Yay. I have a vague memory of thinking, “Self, this is great, you have this covered allllll the way to the end of the year. Go you!” And then I forgot about it.

Yesterday I went to flip December over to the next sheet. You can guess what happened next.

There is no next printout. The stack only went to December and now here I am at the end of the line.

Usually this would mean having to start over from scratch, trying to remember exactly which hoops I had to jump through to get the end result.

Not this time.

This time, Past Me realized that there was no way I’d remember all the annoying details required in each of the multiple applications used. This time, Past Me not only took notes but also clipped them to the last printout in the stack.

I left myself a map.

And so today I am feeling grateful for my past decisions. I’m also asking a question with the potential to make the future a better destination: 

What can I do today to help myself tomorrow?

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My father is going through old boxes of photographs and other memorabilia and sent me a story, one of my first, called “The Devil’s Crutch.” I couldn’t write or (as you’ll see) grasp the intricacies of grammar, geography, or complete sentences, but I dictated it to my mother. 

First we have the story from when I was, what, maybe three years old? I‘ve changed since then (I can even hold a pen all by myself!), but I tried to understand at least a little of what might have been going through my head that day. Then for fun, I turned it into a drabble.

(My father seemed particularly taken by the word “smitchey.” I no longer know what it means but I kept it.)

* * *

The Devil’s Crutch

Once upon a time there was a old, old house up in the south pole. There in the house there is a little room in the playroom and in the room there was a lot of dust. In the room there was a lot of dolls. The dolls didn’t have dust on them because a little smitchey girl had been playing with them. The house was haunted. And this couple moved in the haunted house and every night a ghost came out at twelve o’clock and every night when the ghost came out the couple woke up and saw the ghost and the ghost disappeared whenever the couple saw the ghost. The ghost disappeared. One night the father and the mother was sleeping on the sofa and the devil’s came instead of the ghost. And the owner of the crutch came to the house with the crutch and the owner of the crutch was the devil.

The End

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Once there was a haunted old house way up in the South Pole. It had a playroom of dusty dolls, a grandfather clock and a crutch like bleached bone. 

A family with a smitchey little girl arrived. Every midnight the towering clock cried out. Even when the mother stopped the pendulum, and the father hid the key.

The girl saw a little ghost waving from inside the clock.

She slept huddled under the playroom table. The dolls said it was safer that way.

One night the clock stayed silent and the ghost hid.

And the owner came for his crutch. 

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Photo by Sandy Millar on Unsplash

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