It’s 6pm. I know this because I can hear the nearby church bells ringing as I prepare to transition my daughter from early dinner to early bed on this no-nap day. I feel so grateful for those little markers of time, calling into presence not only me in this moment, but where we are in our day, on our annual trip around the sun. It’s summertime. The sun is still shining.
My daughter, Moon, is just beginning to wrestle with concepts of time, her place within it and within the calendar year. As an accompaniment to her dinner tonight we read a book about the seasons. When we read about Autumn I realize that Halloween is close enough to begin talking about costumes and Christmas close enough to begin making holiday travel plans. I feel time gushing past me, sweeping crows feet across my face. When you have children time moves so fast. Beings morphing and transforming before your very eyes. Don’t blink.
Earlier today I watched Moon ride her Skuut bike down a hilly sidewalk in our neighborhood. As she reached the bottom she tossed her head back to affirm that I witnessed her awesome free fall. I had. But what I also saw was a little girl standing there at the bottom of that hill. Golden hair shimmering. Big teeth. Long legs. When did that happen? Occasionally I have these out of body moments where I can really see my child objectively; separate from being an extension of breast, or hands, and distanced from the ocean we are feeling our way through together. Within seconds I can see her being twice her age as if time has suddenly betrayed me. Appreciation for golden hair, sticky hands and shoes on the wrong feet overwhelms me. And a longing for where we are right now as its slipping through my fingers with a sense of sorrow for the constant changing takes hold for a second. And then I see her again, head turned back to meet my proud and affectionate gaze. Out loud, I say to myself, “May I remember this moment forever.” I do try to claim these golden threads so that maybe I may weave them into something even more beautiful one day. I just pray my crows feet won’t be in vain and that these memories will find a home in them, close to my brain and not far from my heart.