Memories of Scott... where do I start???
As years pass and my mind gets clobbered with lots of other things, some memories fade... things like where did I take my watch off? Other things I can recall from pictures, like how ugly my haircut was in 6th grade. There are things which were never caught on film and aren't a part of my everyday life. It brings me to tears to think that some memories may fade, things like my precious friend, Scott. I hold tightly to those memories of a friend who impacted my life.
For Tony and Bonnie I've shared most of these stories. To write them down and share them again leaves me thinking “don’t you have any other stories to share?”. This is the heart wrenching part of losing a friend so young. Having only known each other a few short years, my memories of Scott are both extensive and limited. Extensive in that I can remember the details and limited in that there's not enough stories. And telling the same story again is admitting that my memories are limited and is the hard part for me.
While memories flood my mind, I continue to wonder where to start. As I wander down memory lane, the whole gamut of emotions overwhelm me once again.
The most prominent memory of frustration is when I asked Scott for a ride home and he said no. I proceeded to walk home while he drove along side of me down Sierra Street in front of the park. I’m not sure how the story ended but I was clearly stubborn right along with my friend. Other frustrating moments occurred during the summer on the river when we’d fight over who could ride the jet ski next. While he may have learned manners from his parents and may have learned how to treat a girl, I was clearly treated like a sister many times.
While Scott and I often had sibling rivalry, it wasn’t always that way. I’ve giggled about this memory lots of times. But moreso after this fall when I was home visiting and Bonnie introduced me to a visiting friend as one of Scott’s old girlfriends. Hee, hee. You’re absolutely right Bonnie, I was an old girlfriend. And I have no idea how long the junior-high “love” lasted but there are a hand full of memories from that time. One was when Amy drove us to the Selma Baskin Robins after youth group. I remember Scott stopping at the house and asked my parents if he could take me to ice-cream. It may have been junior-high but he was respectful and used his manners. On our way to Baskin Robins, he sat in the back of the car with me and we might have even held hands. During that time, Scott went to summer camp. I can’t remember the exact details, but like young kids, he took something of mine to camp and left me with something of his. While at camp, he called me almost daily during his free time to say hello. Sixteen years ago people didn’t have cell phones attached to their bodies so making those phone calls took some time, effort, and cash.
Laughter & Disgust
One of those phone calls from Scott was full of laughs and disgust. The boys were being boys. What I recall was them being made to pull lake weed by some camp dude named Dayn Mansfield who was soon to be our Youth Pastor. Other moments of laughter including when Scott “forked” and “riced” the Workman’s lawn and other minor mischief-filled moments.
There was a serious side to Scott when it really mattered. This is what impacted me the most. Every time I get to share about Scott, this is the story I share. Over several months, Scott invested his time and shared the Gospel Truth with me. I remember him riding his bike over and sitting on the sidewalk and front porch sharing about the character of our Creator with me. I remember taking through the cyclone fence at the town pool about questions I had. I don’t remember the details of each conversation, but the end result was me making the most important decision and giving my life to Christ. I thank God every time I think of Scott.
The loss came in stages as I processed things. Shock, denial, more shock, and more denial. And here’s where it gets really difficult to put thoughts on paper.
Amidst the heartache were moments of healing. I remember Tony and Bonnie coming in and talking to the youth group opening their home even as they dealt with their own grief. Still not really knowing Tony and Bonnie, I went over there anyway. With no expectations except needing tissue, I was blown away by my time there. Find a special note in Scott’s “private” drawer was fun and made me wonder if he’d read it lately. With some smart comment from Tony, he gave me back the letter that day. While it said nothing lovey-dovey or incriminating, it was neat to have. Who knew that the smell of Scott on his pillow would be so emotional that day. And again tonight, sixteen years later.
While Scott was no longer physically with us, the memories continued to build. A little bit of letter writing with Amy, the barn taking Scott’s name, spreading Scott’s ashes and puking on the side of the trail while some old man passed me on the hill. I even dreamed about Scott. But my memories are far more than dreams. They are a reality of a boy who’s life and death impacted people like me.
Sixteen years later as I reflect back memories of my friend, I’m thankful that our lives crossed paths. I’m thankful that Scott had a family that loved him and taught him to love others. Yes, Scott impacted my life and yes, I named my oldest son after him because of it. But, Scott couldn’t have impacted my life without first knowing God. Scott wouldn’t know God without a family who taught him. Thank you Redfern family for loving me by loving your son! I love each of you!