Walking through the mall the other day, I saw a father lift his child to his shoulders. It brought back memories of my own children. I can remember carrying them around on my shoulders and grasping their ankles to hold them tight, so they didn’t fall. As they got older, they could balance better, and hold onto my forehead or around my neck. Those were beautiful years.
Those days zip by so quickly. Someone told me to revel in every moment your child asks you to pick them up because one day they’ll stop asking. I followed that counsel until my kids became too big and my arms too weak to lift over my head and set them on my shoulders. I understand now, but it was also that I had NOTAS disease. “NOT AS” Young as I used to be.
My son is a year from being an adult and my pre-teen daughter is growing up fast. Sometimes too fast. In this wonderful age of technology and information it’s hard to slow them down. My advice to her was to enjoy being eleven and do as many girly things that she could. Don’t worry about someone thinking that your acting immature. If you want to play with dolls, then do it.
I looked to the future and realized that before I knew it, they’ll be in college, starting their own lives, and moving on. I couldn’t blink too long, or I’ll miss something. Then it hit me. I should follow my own advice. Not doing girly things, mind you, but try to live in the moment. Enjoy my kids as they “are” and not how they “were” or how they’re “going to be”.
About this same time, one of my favorite James Taylor songs floated up in my mind. The song is called, “Secret O’ Life”. Certain lines of this song are so poignant and full of wisdom that I’ve played it whenever I’ve found myself worrying about the time I’ve lost or may lose. Read some of these lines below, and take them out into the world with you:
“The secret of life is enjoying the passage of time.”
“The secret of love is opening up your heart.”
“And since we’re only here for a while. Might as well show some style.”
“The time about time is that time isn’t really real. It’s just your point of view.”
“Try not to try too hard. It’s just a lovely ride.”
The full lyrics can be found <here>
So for now, I’m settling for giving piggy-back rides; I can still do that.