Friday, June 28, 2013
|Thing 2 and his Cousin - They've got swagger!|
They only spend a small amount of time playing pioneer and yet, if done well, it can have a profound effect on them. I am anxious to hear how he felt about the Women's Pull.
Just thinking about that makes me teary.
I tried to find a good video to link to so that my friends and family that aren't Mormon can have a glimpse of what I am talking about. If I find it, I'll post a separate post about it.
I had to get a story together for Thing 2 to take with him on his adventure and I remembered the one I found when Thing 1 was playing pioneer and I got emotional again as I rewrote it all down for Thing2. I suppose it hit closer to home this time around. I am not totally sure why the story impacted me so deeply writing it down for Thing 2 but it did. I have thought about that story almost non-stop since sending Thing 2 off on his adventure.
My Great, Great, Great Grandfather crossed the plains with his family and his daughter was about the age of Moxie when she died somewhere near the Sweet Water River -- which was a little over a hundred miles from the Salt Lake Valley. They buried their daughter in a shallow grave out on the wild prairie and continued on with the Wagon Company.
I can't even imagine my little girl dying, let alone burying her in a grave on the prairie to be left there. Alone. Unnoticed or recognized for the remainder of ... well, forever. The thought of it breaks my heart. As I am sure it did her Father and Mother.
Seventy-five miles from their final destination, my Great, Great, Great Grandfathers wife, Caroline, died; however, before she died, she made him promise that she would not bury her on the prairie, but rather take her body to the Salt Lake Valley and bury her there. She also made him promise that he would go back and get their daughter and bring her body back to the Valley and bury their little girl next to her mother.
And so my Great, Great Great Grandfather carried the body of his dead wife all the way to the valley, not stopping for anything. When he got there, he buried her -- making her the first white woman to be buried in the Valley -- and turned immediately around and headed back out to get his daughter. He rested with his Wagon Company for one day and then continued on to where he had buried his daughter. When he got to that sacred place he found that the wolves had already gotten to her, making it impossible to carry out his dying wife's last request.
Can you imagine?
While some people think that Pioneer Trek is super weird and dumb-- and at first glance it does seem super weird and dumb -- I think it is a wonderful way for these kids to catch a glimpse of what their ancestors sacrificed for them. It is a way to learn about your history in a tangible way and it makes you appreciate the blessings that are in your life. There really is not another way to really help young people understand just how hard it was to walk across the plains -- 1,300 miles -- pulling a hand cart and fighting off animals, Indians, hunger and even death. Telling them stories is one thing, but re-enacting it creates a whole new experience for them and I think it can strengthen their connection to not just their past, but to their ancestors.
That's really all I have this week. My thoughts have been centered almost entirely around Pioneers and my son. I hope you all have a lovely weekend. I will be counting down the hours until he is back safely in my home.
1. Wild Horses (Live) - Alicia Keyes, Adam Levine
2. 1979 - Smashing Pumpkins
3. I Don't Want to Die Anymore - New Radicals
4. Ants Marching (Live) - Dave Matthews Band
5. Wanted - Hunter Hayes
6. Sweetest Thing - U2
7. Mad World - Gary Jules
8. Elizabeth, You Were Born to Play That Part - Ryan Adams
9. Gone, Gone, Gone - Phillip Phillips
10. What Hurts the Most - Rascal Flatts
Bonus: Feel It All Around - Washed Out