Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

On Beautiful and Painful Priceless Moments

Remember those priceless moment commercials? They went something like this:

Tickets for a family to go to a waterpark: $84.00
Nachos and lemonade at the waterpark: $27.00
A new swimsuit for the child who’d outgrown his: $20.00
Sunscreen for the waterpark: $11.00
Memories from a day of sparkle-filled moments with the family: Priceless

Then, they’d show photos of a smiling family, or a kid, at a waterpark. The kid with a GoPro on his head, where he’d shown a funny video, before.

Tucker waterpark with gopro happy priceless

They’d show an airshow, or a beach or whatever, blissful and content, bellies and hearts full of beautiful priceless moments.

Sometimes, those moments happen in a grocery store, in the frozen food isle, captured on video for all eternity.

Remember those priceless commercials? I mention them because tonight’s sentence for Finish the Sentence Friday is “What’s priceless about…” and those commercials are what swim through my head. Those, and visions of waterparks, apparently, although that may be my eight-year-old’s fault.

On Beautiful and Painful Priceless Moments

Me: “Hey buddy, you know how there are some things we can buy that make us happy? Like Nerf guns and plane tickets to the beach?”

“Yeah…” he replied.

“Well,” I said, “There are some things that make us just as happy – probably happier, even – than the ones we can buy.”

“Okay,” he said.

“What’s something we can’t buy with money that makes you really happy?”

“What should I say?” he asked.

“Whatever comes to your mind,” I said.

“A house with a waterpark in the backyard,” he said.

“But a house with a waterpark in the backyard is something we can buy.”

“No, mom. It’s not. We don’t have enough dollars, and you wouldn’t let me use my college money so that’s why I said it,” he said.

“Fair enough,” I said, thinking how disappointed this kid is going to be once he’s old enough to know what “his” college money actually amounts to.

What’s priceless about life is that we get just one chance to live it, one chance to react in the moment, and too many other chances to remember, and re-enact both.

We’re all familiar with priceless moments, maybe because one of the credit card companies used to remind us on network television about them regularly. I’m an easy cryer and often teared up at those commercials.

But there is something to priceless moments, right? To having them?

When I think about the moments that may flash through my mind at death, if that really happens (and I hope it does), there are many.

They’re moments impossible to purchase, even for the wealthiest among us. Other moments couldn’t be sold for the world, but remain priceless to us because of their import. Sometimes, priceless moments change us because they’re painful.

Other times, we remember smiling, accidentally, because we feel like we’re flying because it’s June, or because we’re on a Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios, or feeling like we’re part of a collective me, too. We think about our proudest moments.

Others are more elusive, and we only remember the feeling.

Anyway, when it comes to priceless moments, and remembering them, the following are a few of mine.

Laughing until I could hardly breathe with friends one night, after sharing remembered stories, some of which were tragic at the time, but gained hilarity in hindsight, or maybe the fact that we remembered together was what made us laugh.

The night I knocked on a the door of a hotel room in San Francisco to meet my biological mother and sister. That it was awesome rather than awful, as it could have been either. Two days later, we took our shoes off in the street to compare toes, after me living a life of looking at the toes of women, wondering whether they were related to me, at pools and waterparks.

Walking away from one and finding another, and then another again who was the one I’d end up building a life with. Creating new life with.

Creating new life. Meeting Tucker, for the first time. Look at how wrinkly his arms were!!! OMG, if that’s not priceless… well. Anyway, I continue, because there are more. But those arms?? LOOK AT THOSE ARMS!

Meeting Tucker again, each day, and each year. Him, finding words, and himself while I find new words too. Words like special needs, different, and endurance.

Finding myself as a mom, at 40.

When my youngest brother huddled next to me, asking whether our mom was crying, or laughing, and me lying to him, because he was eight years old. Getting through the next months and years, and being mostly fine, instead of and because of the rest of it. Learning what having a sibling means, in the best ways even though for most moments, you want to pummel them. Steal their desserts.

Researching dogs, not to replace the last, best dog in the world, who was my keeper of secrets, but because you feel guilty that your son is (for the most part) an only child, and you want him to grow up with a buddy, and know that dogs are the very best keepers of secrets and adventures.

Getting to the other side of a scary time, even though you didn’t see it as scary back then. Reckless, maybe, but not scary. Like hanging out in a graveyard, in New Orleans.

Test results that aren’t awesome, but aren’t deadly, either.

On Beautiful and Painful Priceless Moments

When it comes to them, we remember all of them.

A little boy’s persistence, and him learning at eight years old to pronounce the sound “r” for the first time, sometimes. When he tries, anyway.

The word “Girls” still sounds like “gowows,” the word “really” is still “weawwly,” but every now and again, if he tries super hard, “right” is “rrrright!” rather than white. And that’s priceless enough for me.
Check him out. He’s amazing.

He’s also totally annoyed with me for interupting his Mine Craft time, and he’s had way more candy than is acceptable for anybody, any day. But also? He’s going to tell you two jokes. And he’s awesome and fabulous (and a little bit terrible at the jokes and in getting on board with me recording him in general) in every way (in my opinion).

I actually hate his last joke but his friends have laughed at it, and that’s been enough for him. We’re all a work in progress, I know.

I’m a work in progress, and hope for more priceless moments to remind me of what really matters.

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post, and this week’s sentence”What’s priceless about…” was thought up by Mardra, of, who is awesome in all the ways.

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  • Linda Atwell - His joke cracked me up!
    And I love his wrinkly arms.
    And I also loved those priceless commercials! I’m glad you are making so many memories!November 2, 2017 – 10:33 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - So glad you liked his jokes and OMG I so love his wrinkly arms. I miss baby-him, sometimes. Thanks, Linda! November 3, 2017 – 11:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Ivy/ zoe - Priceless. The jokes are priceless.November 2, 2017 – 10:54 pmReplyCancel

  • clark - I don’t know, I thought it was pretty funny…. (must be a Y Chromian thing, you wouldn’t understand. lol)

    I usually don’t read others posts on a bloghop until I’ve written and hit ‘Publish’ on my own… that way I don’t get all ‘oh-man-my-post-is-pitifully-out-of-it’s-league here… but with you I make an exception.
    If I’m all, like, ‘damn! can’t think of anything’ I read your post. And then I realize that there was something insightful and engaging to say on the topic, had I only the language skills (and nerve) to type it into the post.

    Good sentence fragment, good sentence finish.

    No fair taking all the good observations!

    I was, no surprise, heading along the same path, (allowing for our different family demographic)… now, I have no choice but to abandon that and go for the weird.November 3, 2017 – 7:49 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - See, you were heading along the same path anyway, and then could’ve said “I KNEW YOU WERE A CLARK!” but yeah, I get it. I don’t often read anybody else’s posts from a sentence or a hop because they get in my head and I can’t get them out, so I get it. But now I want to know what you’d have written in the same path (although I did very love the path you ended up going down, especially the car and feeling like I was in the 80’s because well the 80’s…). November 3, 2017 – 11:51 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Yes, those are the best wrinkly arms!! And researching a dog?! I say, Go for it!! Dogs are awesome!!November 3, 2017 – 2:51 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yeah, we’re talking about it. It’s hard though, after you’ve had the very best dog in the world, right? Also, my allergies are worse now, and so I’ve got to actually plan this time, rather than just picking the one I see on a street corner or shelter (which is what I’ve done before). Or, not, because those times worked out pretty well, too… November 3, 2017 – 11:52 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - I count at least five eye rolls in that last video – Tucker is going to rrrrrock adolescence! And I like both jokes – tell T I said that, please.

    Here’s to many more priceless moments!November 3, 2017 – 4:09 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - HAHAH to the rrrrrrocking adolescence. Truth! I’ll tell him you said so. I just don’t like the second one out of principle, or something, but yeah, he’s funny 😉November 3, 2017 – 11:53 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - The two of you…I just love your relationship.November 3, 2017 – 9:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Tina Szocik - I never thought of moments that change us because they’re painful as being priceless, but so TRUE!!!!November 4, 2017 – 10:17 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I never thought of the ones that hurt being priceless either, until I started thinking about it, and yes, so true. Thank you for saying so. November 4, 2017 – 11:07 pmReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Awww to meeting bio mom and sister and comparing toes. LOL! Have you ever written a post about the meet? I’d love to read it. I know I saw pictures this summer? of you and your bio mom, wow to the resemblance.

    Off to check out Tucker’s videos – I almost typed “toes”.November 7, 2017 – 5:21 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I’ve only eluded to it in posts; I should probably write about the whole experience, but I worry about the *other* people involved. LOL to the toes! November 13, 2017 – 9:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - Form one work-in-progess, to another, thank you for sharing your priceless moments and memories. ANd you little video start ROCKS!!!!!November 13, 2017 – 10:55 amReplyCancel

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