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My Life Was In My Arms

Story ID:4285
Written by:Michael Timothy Smith (bio, link, contact, other stories)
Story type:Story
Location:Boise/Fort Lee NJ/ID USA
Person:My Life
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I haven't posted much lately. I have been in the
middle of cross country move.

This is the first of many stories to come from that move.

My Life is in My Arms

It was 9 PM. We were at the end of the second day of loading the truck. The
twenty-seven truck box was filled from front-to-back and almost to the roof with
everything Ginny and I owned.

I looked around me. Our mattress and box spring leaned against the side of the
truck. Behind me, waiting to be loaded was our barbeque, patio chairs, a wine rack that I
made myself, and a host of other items. I looked at my son-in-law, who’d flown from
Idaho to help us load and drive to Idaho.
“Nathan, it’s not going to happen tonight. I’m
tired, beaten and bruised. I can’t do anymore. I know we want to leave early, but we’re
going to have to rearrange things to get the rest of this stuff in.”

He agreed.

We dragged our mattresses back up two flights of stairs and settled in for a night
in an empty house. The next morning, Nathan and I managed to get the rest of our
belongings into the truck. He reached up, pulled the handle, and the sliding door slammed

Nathan drove the truck around the block and aligned it with the trailer my car
would ride on for the 2500 mile trip from Fort Lee, New Jersey to our destination of Caldwell, Idaho.

We took a final tour of the home. It was empty. It was time for our adventure to
begin. I stood with Nathan beside the truck. “You ready?”

“Let’s do it!” He climbed into the driver’s seat.

I stood on the curb and stared at the truck. “There it is.” I whispered to myself.
“Everything I own is in there. My life is on that truck. Is that all there is?” It rattled me. If
I were to die today, is that all there would be? Did my forty eight years of life amount to
a truck full of things?

Ginny walked up to me. We hugged. “It’s time to roll, Hun.” I whispered into her
ear. “Let’s get it done.”

She held me tight. “Michael, I’m scared. I didn’t think the truck was going to
help us.”

“Hun, we’ll get through it somehow. No matter what, we have each other.”

We continued to hold each other. I felt her love for me. We’d been married for a little
over four years. They were the happiest years of my life. I looked over her shoulder at the
truck and realized, my life wasn’t in there. The things in the truck could be replaced. My
life is the friends I made and the memories I left behind during each of my moves. It is
the stories I’ve written – stories that recount my thoughts and life. They will be read
again and again by the next generation of my family and they will know who I am.

I squeezed Ginny again. This woman holding me is my life. The most valuable thing held me. My life
wasn’t on the truck. My life was in my arms.

Michael T. Smith