Lately I have been thinking about time…not time as in, it is 10:23…time like in, there was a time when I walked my own kids to school each morning. A time when my husband was one of the few dads who worked from home. A time when Fall meant guessing what the high school musical would be. Scenes from another life.
I think one of the keys to aging gracefully is the ability to realize we are only here for a blip. That as much as things matter at the moment…they really don’t matter in the long run. The ability to appreciate each day is all that counts. Walking with a five year old is window into the life we should all be living. He says things like “let’s run…just because we can”, he is right, we can…so we should. He screams up the block to complete strangers “I think your doggie is SO COOL”, after a pause, they reply thank you, to which he screams “YOU’RE WELCOME”. Smiles all around. He can even break middle schoolers fully embracing their ennui. As we approach on the narrow sidewalks, no room for escape, he screams “I like your backpack”…their icy faces melt for a minute. He is magic.
The magic of embracing each moment for the goodness that is…don’t focus on too far ahead and don’t look back with visions of it being perfect. It wasn’t.
I have tucked away a few bits of magic, near perfect parenting moments. One of them was when my daughter got her period. She called from the nurses office hysterical. “MOM COME GET ME NOW!” I did not ask questions I just got there. When she told me the scoop we decided to cut out of school and ditch work. We had a lovely afternoon just us…a visit to the drug store, a cute haircut, topping it off with an ice cream. One should look and feel good when cramping. Another moment I was just reminded of thanks to a FB memory alert…my son as senior in high school, playing Luther Billis in South Pacific. He was loving life, dog tags, a coconut bra, and some hysterical moments on stage…a rare, near perfect creative experience. It was opening night, there would be 6 performances, then his acting career would most likely be done. I went to him in a quiet moment and said “enjoy it, enjoy every single minute, this kind of goodness does not happen often, take mental snapshots and remember it forever”. My youth group leader gave me the same advice before I walked down the aisle. I am forever grateful.
Doggies and backpacks… compliment them. Dads…embrace how many of them are now around for the day to day goodness. Dog tags, coconut bras, and other special once in a lifetime moments…recognize their beauty and appreciate them while you are living them.
It is so hard to live the moment, to avoid comparing, to just embrace the now.
I am, we are, it is…a constant work in progress.