If you could live your life all over again would you change anything? What would you say to the people you loved and lost?
Last night in what seemed an endless dream; I spent time with an older couple who I just could not seem to place. I remembered the smells and their faces and we talked about life, families and how they missed everyone. They knew everything about me, yet I was infuriated that I could not remember who they were. Were they people I had met at a garage sale and snapped pictures of? I could not remember, yet everything facing me at that point and time was as clear as day.
Photo of the F. J. Knight Co on South Street- Cowansville Quebec
The couple sat on a blue couch with a sheer plastic cover and the Life magazines on the coffee table stared back at me. They asked me how I was feeling and I told them that I was fine. Both of them told me that they had shed many tears watching me go through life and felt helpless. I looked into the woman’s eyes and remembered. I was talking to my grandmother – but how could that be? She had died thirty six ago and how was she able to speak to me now?
My grandparents told me that I had made many wrong turns in life but I was now on the right road. Grammy beckoned me to the couch where she hugged me and we broke into tears. She told me to dry my eyes, go upstairs, and rest before supper.
This is the same door that was on the F. J. Knight building in Cowansville that is now in my home.
I climbed up the familiar orange painted wooden stairs and opened the upper floor door. Cold air slapped me in the face like it used to when I was a child. They never turned the heat on the second floor and only used small space heaters at night. I went into my grandparent’s rooms and sat on one of the twin beds. I could smell her Evening in Paris perfume in the air and the sun shone through the closed pink curtains. Sitting on the worn yellow chenille bedspread, I looked at the ceiling and remembered my grandfather died just outside this room.
My grandmother had helped him from the very bed I was laying on to the bathroom one September day and he lost his footing. I heard her scream and tried to drag one of the oxygen tanks up the stairs, but it was way too heavy. Grammy frantically hovered over his now lifeless body and begged him not to die. As the antique travel clock clicked loudly on the sideboard I attempted to give my grandfather mouth to mouth resuscitation. After a few minutes I felt his last gasp on my face and knew he was gone.
The mail slot
There didn’t seem to be any closure to the dream after I awoke and many hours later I looked at the calendar on the fridge. It was June the 27th. Thirty five years ago to the day they had torn my grandparents home down to replace it with a gas station. My father had salvaged the front green door that was important to my Grandfather, and years later I brought the door back to my home where it still stands guarding the basement.
Last night in a dream my grandparents shared their love with me once again. Mistakes are meant to be made so you can learn from them and I would not change a thing about how I handled my life. Love is to be spread far and wide, not contained, and their memories will live through me for the remaining days I have left, along with what went on daily behind closed doors.
Mary Louise Deller Knight- Cowansville Quebec
The door in the picture is the same door as in the first picture and belonged to my Grandparents who had the F.J. Knight Co (electricians) in Cowansville, Quebec. That door was removed by my late father and we died I installed it in my home. The last picture is my grandmother, Mary Louise Deller Knight who raised me. I only had one picture of her and thanks go out to Denis Ducharme for the pictures.