The Browns had our big family reunion this last month, and it's always nice to get the whole crazy group together, but since Chelsie died I always have a gnawing feeling of absence. Funny, I never feel it at other times, but when we're all together, it always pops up in the back of my mind that there's someone missing. I thing growing up in a big family, you get in the habit of taking rollcall in your head whenever you're together, even as one of the kids, cause it's too common to miss somebody and leave them (at Thunderridge. Barefoot. Running down the street. Mother.)
Anyway, when I was home, I took the opportunity to ransack some of my storage boxes I have hanging out at home. When I was a kid, I used to collect these little wooden carvings they make in Mexico, and I had quite a few. I remember being really proud of them, they had all these little appendages and horns and wings, and I had them on display in my room. Anyway, one summer, my little sisters played with them when I was at school, and broke off a lot of the little parts. I got home and had a little 14-year-old meltdown, and then tried to patch them together. I glued most of the pieces back together, but some of the holes had pieces snapped off in them, so you couldn't stick anything in them again. I put them together as best they could, and really, no one else would have noticed a difference, but after that, everytime I looked at them all I saw were the broken pieces, and they just didn't seem that special anymore. Eventually I packed them up into a closet somewhere. Funny how missing just one little wooden piece could make the whole thing seem so incomplete.