When I hear wind chimes, I remember Paul--a recently sprouted palm tree my sister and I discovered. We tracked its growth weekly with a ruler made with paper, pencils, and inch approximations based on the distance between the first and second knuckles of my forefinger. When I hear wind chimes, I remember rollerblading on those black, black roads. I remember swimming with cousins, and simply adoring the novelty of being able to see underwater when I wore goggles. I remember blue raspberry snow cones, and thinking that my cousin was really odd for reading a book with as strange a title as "Harry Potter." Because, really, who names their child Harry?
I remember feeling so cool as I swept our back patio while using my mom's walkman--jamming out to Enrique Inglesias the whole time. I remember singing to my dad over the phone, wishing he were there. When I hear wind chimes, I am lead to the morning I walked out of my room to get ready for school and found my mom sitting on the couch in shock--hands over her mouth, staring at the TV screen as an airplane flew into the second twin tower. I remember loudly singing "God Bless the USA" in school.
Wind chimes remind me of Visitor, a cactus wren who occasionally flew in through our open kitchen window and made himself quite at home. I remember hikes through the cactus forests. I remember realizing that, though only five minutes apart, twenty minutes seemed an eternity longer than fifteen. Wind chimes bring memories of the class clown who, against multiple warnings from every teacher, stroked a cactus in the small garden of our school. Through tears, he explained that he did it because he, "thought the cactus was bald." Wind chimes remind me of treading fertilizer into a garden barefoot as a class, and learning the reason why it smelled so bad. It was in that class that I was taught that smart person is never bored, because she can find a way to entertain herself always.
Wind chimes remind me of the days when I didn't mind the heat one bit, and when I thought it was exciting that we happened to move into our new home on the hottest day of the year.
Today I heard wind chimes. And I remembered the days of carefree imagination. Today I played games with a three year old who shot me with his toy gun, then kissed me on the cheek to wake me from an otherwise deathly slumber. Today my baby brother gave me the biggest hugs when I needed them most, and today I caught a piece of how far I've come since the faraway days of the wind chimes.
"We are the creatures of our thinking. We can talk ourselves into defeat or we can talk ourselves into victory."
-President Gordon B. Hinckley, entire address here.
I've still got a long way to go, but I think I can get there.
Conference Weekly here.