By Mary Bisciaio
Originally Published on May 21st, 2018.
I suffer from CRS. My doctor has not confirmed the diagnosis, but he doesn’t live my life. He doesn’t climb twenty steps to our second floor colonial to immediately forget what I wanted, only to remember fifteen minutes later when I return to the kitchen. He doesn’t go to the grocery for three items and return with five but without the original three. Yes, I suffer from CRS, can’t remember s… Well, you get my drift. Sometimes, I’m amazed at an old memory, one as much as fifty years ago, vivid and sharp. I am convinced those memories that touch the heart remain forever locked there till a trigger brings it back.
My father worked hard for our blue collar family in East Detroit. He learned English at Denby High School in Detroit and later took classes at Macomb College. He took care of his family so my mother could be a stay-at-home mom, at least, till I was twelve and went to junior high. She cooked, cleaned, and sewed. I still can’t sew a stitch.
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In the summer my dad would get his well-deserved one week then two week vacation. We did three things on those special times. We saw one movie at a theatre in Grosse Pointe, had one dinner in a restaurant usually Elias Brothers Big Boy, and we drove up I-94 to Port Huron. As a child I loved the water, but I was restless. I recognized even then, the tranquility of this place. I wanted to feel the coolness, the wetness, and impatiently waited for the freighters. Funny, it was the calm that stayed with me, though. When things got tough over the years, I turned to the water at Port Huron, at Mackinaw, anywhere in this state with the abundance of rivers, streams, and lakes. There is something about the predictability, the constant—one wave, followed by another that calms the panicked soul, and even during a storm, I learned the water would again be calm, my life would continue.
When my kids were young, my husband and I drove to the Blue Water Bridge on many a warm Sunday afternoon. My rambunctious sons wanted to run, not walk. My oldest loved to climb the rocks while the youngest put his head through the rails and leaned over. My mother’s heart had many an anxious moment as I envisioned them toppling into the water. I distracted them, pointing out the jet-skis, the sail and motor boats, and, of course, the freighters. When all else failed, I bought them snacks.
Now, my husband and I are retired. Our gait has slowed, but there is no rush as we walk along the water. We use to cross the bridge occasionally for Sarnia, but we haven’t in a long time. All we need is on this side of the bridge. We’ve learned patience as we wait for the freighters, to guess at their load, to catch a glimpse of their flag, and to wonder about the men who make these journeys whose lives are on the water. We talk to friendly people, fishing off the rails like my dad had done once upon a time. A trigger to unlocking a memory deep within my heart.
Mary has lived her entire in life in Michigan. She’s obsessed with the beauty of our state and spends a lot of time by the water. She’s a graduate of Marygrove College in Detroit and attended Saginaw Valley College for her post-graduate work. She enjoyed teaching middle school and high school for 27 years in East Detroit.
After she retired, she started a new career. With more time to read, she got hooked on romance novels and began writing her own. She currently has five novels in both e-book and print on Amazon and continues to find inspiration in her travels and in her imagination.
She lives with her husband of forty-five years, raised two great sons that have given her two great daughters-in-law, and five grandchildren.
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