Friday, December 25, 2009

soup and the poop

From a distance this afternoon I watched Greta on the swings at the park.  When the wind blows her bangs back I see myself when I was five. Same profile, same forehead, same nose.  I never had bangs, my hair always pulled back in a ponytail or braids.
I have few memories of when I was four, a couple vague memories of three, but I hold many memories of when I was five.  I remember playing in the orchards with Rosa, her sister telling me of how she tripped on her shoelaces and got a bloody nose. I recall  pretending to be Wonder Woman and loving Grizzly Adams ( I think partly because my dad also had a beard) and BJ and the Bear.  Sharing a bed with my mom, I remember being fidgety at bedtime and I can still hear her voice, "Rachel...sit still."
It almost seems that my life started at five.
Now that Greta is five I feel very aware of the fact that she's going to remember a lot of this.  While she's playing with friends or chatting with me in the kitchen, I wonder if this moment will be forever embedded into her memory.  I especially feel conscious of this when I get cranky, impatient, or overreact  because I haven't had enough sleep (only because I stay up way too late.)
Like yesterday when I had a large pot of soup in a bag ready to be delivered to an ill friend.  I had turned for 23 seconds to help Greta with something only to return to the living room to find Henry dragging the bag by the handles around the house with a proud grin on his face.  Soup filled the bag.  Or this morning when I spotted Daisy in the kitchen in ready position to poop, I yelled and had to swing into action, alas, I was too late.
I pretty much reacted with the same, "AHHHHHHH  NOOOO!!" both times.
The kids looked at me with wide eyes and concerned faces at first and then they laughed, not so much at me  but at the soup and the poop.  Then I laughed and we all had a good laugh together.
In our daily life we are fortunate to have lots of laughs, friends, discovery,and play,  but sometimes tears and hurt feelings.  I realize that the memories my kids hold won't always be rosy and sweet, but I feel determined not to sweat the small stuff and make the most of everyday we spend together.  I want for our family to remember this time as being one of the best times of our lives.
So this afternoon after a full day at the park, Greta was exhausted from biking, swinging, and climbing trees.  Me exhausted from lack of sleep.  We drove home and I looked back at her as she ravenously devoured the innards of a crusty baguette.  Crumbs were flying, covering her and the entire back seat.  Henry was staring at her.  I sighed, kept silent, and smiled to myself.  A quiet fleeting moment but I think I will remember it forever, or at least be reminded of it as I vacuum out my car...sometime in the near (distant) future.


The Kender-Page said...

Very true, sweet and wise.

Peggy Ray said...

You are soooo much more advanced than me, even now! I am so impressed with your insights.