Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Where does time go?

I remember growing up hearing older people talk about how the older you get the faster time flies by. I'm 47 years old now. I woke up this morning and thought today was Tuesday until I looked at my watch. What!? What a minute, what happened to Tuesday?

You have to sit and go over the flash of the day to realize that it happened. I took LJ to work and dropped her off. I love our alone time together. I'm so proud of her. She tries to be so mature, especially when she's working or even talking about work. She sits in the front seat so quiet and solemn, and I laugh inside at the thoughts of when she likes to be the family's stand-up comic. She's also our resident "blond". LJ can be a little naive at times and so sweet about it. We say our good-bye's and exchange "I love you". We're trying to teach our children the habit, as shallow as it may seem to some, that the last words we want a loved one to remember us saying to them is "I love you". So we try to always say it as part of our good-bye either in person or on the phone.

I drove 20 miles up from Kitty Hawk to Corolla NC to work. On a highway or even a main road in most places the trip would be a snap. Here, it takes over half an hour because the speed limit ranges from 25 -45mph. We live in a tourist environment and the roads are two lanes, and we have slow traffic and gobs of week-end warrior athletes clogging the road with joggers and bikers. When I get behind a tourist with no place to go and all day to get there (or he's lost), the trip will take about 45 minutes. No place to pass!

My day at work is non-stop from time in to time out. That's a good thing because it does make the day go by much faster. Except, I tend to forget to accomplish anything else that I was supposed to do, like get some of my adoption paperwork signed and notarized. Pam's much, much better at that than I am.

When I get home, the kids are normally playing on their computers in the living room. We sit them side by side in the living room so all is relatively "safer". They actually acknowledge my arrival - most of the time. I'll kiss the closest one to me if anyone passes by me. I'll find Pam either working on the adoption paperwork (her full time job it seems), or preparing dinner. Her cooking is fantastic! (I can't call her a "cook", she hates to cook, but can put a good hurtin on you in the kitchen - Go figure)

If weather permits we eat out on our screened in deck in back. The back of the house faces west, so we get to see the sunset through our trees over the Albemarle Sound. This is my favorite time of day - family time at dinner. That's where it all really gets real. Pam and I talk and pull in the kids whenever it's applicable. We talk about our day, their day, the day, extended family, the news, the Olympics...whatever. When we first brought them home, this was teaching time, both during and after dinner. We learned vocabulary and culture at the same time. I still smile when I remember standing up doing the little song and motion to "Head, shoulders, knees and toes!". I look forward to doing it again with our 3-2-B.

After the kids clear the table, we watch a little TV. We only have one in the house, so we all watch together - Dad normally gets first choice. Pam's not much of a TV watcher, she likes to just sit in the room with us as she's working on one project or another. Bath time for the kids and then I pray with the boys in their bedroom. By then Mom is going down for the count. She has to be at work more than 3 hours before me.

And then it's all quiet. Time for bed and do it all over again!

1 comment:

Irma said...

Not the point of your post, but I have to tell you my experience with the "Say You Love Them" rule. No one specifically taught me to do this, but I heard the words" I love you" so often when I was a child -- both directed at us kids, or between my parents-- that it was deeply ingrained in me.

It may sound like "bad luck thinking" but when I became an adult I realized I HAD to tell my loved ones how I felt everytime we said goodbye, because what if I never got another chance? And so it went for many many years.

Two years ago I stopped over at my parents house on my way home from work for, maybe, two minutes, to grab a book. I spoke briefly with my mom, but for whatever reason, I didn't even say hello to my father, who was sitting right there.

Seven hours later, he died of a heart attack.

I do not believe in regret. I do not believe in wishing the past could be different. But if I could change one thing, in te entire course of my 38 years? I wish I had told my Dad I love him that one last time.

You are doing the right thing, teaching this to your children.