Yesterday made me stop and think about some of the things I want for Aeryanna someday. It all started with a stick of gum. When I was growing up, my grandparents' lived across the street from a very sweet man. I always new him as Mr. Sheriff. I didn't even know his first name until I was a teenager. What I remember most about Mr. Sheriff is going across the street to visit him when he was out in his yard. He always carried Wrigley's Doublemint gum in his pocket and would give me a stick of gum. At Halloween he would put together goodie bags for me with packs of Doublemint and plastic necklaces.
When I was in high school, Mr. Sheriff adopted a little chihuahua mix that wandered up to his house. This little dog LOVED to run whenever it got the chance. I can remember chasing that dog down the street and bringing it back to him quite often. By that time, he didn't chew gum anymore, but he would always pat his pocket with he saw me and say "I don't have any gum today." Even in college, I would go say hello to Mr. Sheriff when he was sitting in the swing in his garage when I came home. I knew it meant a lot to him because he would always come across the street after I left and tell my grandparents that I came to visit him.
Mr. Sheriff passed away a few years ago, but I will never see Wrigley's Doublemint gum without thinking of him. I mention all of this because I found a pack of Doublemint in the pocket of a jacket this week. It made me think back on all of the years of going to visit Mr. Sheriff. One of my hopes for Aeryanna is that she will have someone like that with whom she can make memories that will stick with her for a lifetime. I want her to have that connection with someone and learn the joy that can you can get from making those friendships. We all need someone like that in our lives.