The experience is unlike any other. Another year of school has come to an end creating a new set of graduates…each of them eager to take the chances and paths ahead of them…leaving their childhood behind and Stepping Into Adulthood!
Pomp and Circumstance plays over and over again, in a vicious circle, until it echoes in your head. Young men and women dressed in ceremonial cap and gowns as tassels bounce and sway with each choreographed step. Family and friends gather to watch with memories tearfully filling their head.
“I remember when..”.
“My baby is all grown up….”
“It happened so fast…”
If they don’t hear these statements they’re thinking them.
The speakers stand nervously to motivate and encourage this new collection of excited minds. The world is the limit and nothing is out of reach for this collective. Finally the roll call of names begins and your heart begins to beat furiously inside your chest. It seems to drown out the announcer but robotically you stand as those around you stand and wait, walk, wait, walk and wait…
That’s my name…walk…smile…shake with right…reach with the left…turn…walk off stage…BREATHE!
Somewhere in the distance you can hear well wishes and cheers…and then it hits you!
I need a job! A good one…and college…and MONEY!
Welcome to Adulthood!.
Congratulations to the Graduating Class of 2013…Well Done!
(In honor of my dearest friends and their graduating son!)
Have a great day!
The darkness fades as shades of deep orange and pink pierce the horizon. The gentle beams reach out to brush the moisture from the leaves and bring light to the morning. The morning moves forward as I watch Dawn’s Early Light.
I cannot stop this progressive march of light and have to yield to it’s order. I reach for my coffee and listen to the day come alive. Another day of scheduled activities, silently flash on my hand-held screen, reminding my sleepy brain of the ticking clock. Virtual numbers begin their countdown and I slowly reach for another warming sip from my friendly cup. The broken and bent light has reached beyond the trees and begins to filter through the windows of my life.
Patterns appear across the damp grass as scampering chipmunks dash from sight. Playful sounds of morning fill the air as Spring tickles the leaves with a breeze. All is well in this morning dance by Dawn’s Early Light.
I hope and pray for resolution of several issues that plague my day. Heavy decisions and realizations of dreams hang in the balance as this day unfolds. The rippling effect, of the choices made, could be felt by our family for a long time. Both positive and negative….where is my happy balance?
Sorry…I do not mean to sound like a Weeping Willow. I do not want to stand with my shoulders hung over as moisture sprinkles all around me. I long for the peaceful remnants of normalcy…childhood…where these issues did not invade and tear apart the fibers held together by love and trust.
Dawn’s Early Light is fleeting as the colorful blooms show their true nature in the morning sunlight. The air is pleasant and cool, as it teases with a gentle caress, knowing the warming of the day is on it’s way. I close my eyes and smile…Iced Coffee! It will definitely be a day for an Iced Coffee Escape.
Our morning shuffle will take us into our day…I know this and will put a smile on my face and hold one in my heart. I will reach for my cup and sip…but only until this cup is gone. “Places to go and People to see…it will be a long day filled with life.” I smiled as I wrote that! I do have a life no matter what the situation. “And so do you…Go live your life today and find something that will put a smile on your face and a smile in your heart!”
Have a great day!
Some of the dearest memories, I have from school, are the shelves of books that lined the wall of the classroom under the windows. There were collections of biographies and a large collection of the Classics. You know the ones… Alice in Wonderland, The Wizard of Oz, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Journey to the Center of the Earth…the list could go on! Now days the typical classroom does not have this large reading treasure trove instead they have Diary of a Wimpy Kid and every book written about a mouse and his motorcycle. What About the Classics?
This has been a burning question recently. My youngest continues to ask me if I have read certain books. I love to read and he knows this…but the titles are books that have been written in the past 10-12 years and well…I don’t read baby books! I have tried to explain to him the fact that these books were not written when I was little. When I was his age I was reading The Classics! I start telling him about the wonderful and exciting adventures I had while reading them and the dreams that came from these great books. I told him…Journey to the Center of the Earth is one of my favorites and the dreams I had…”Oh, I saw that movie! You got to watch DVDs in school?”.
After he got over the shock that we did not have DVDs when I was in school I told him these books were written before there was television. Then he tore into a discussion about no television.
My question is: If these children are not encouraged to read these great masterpieces then how will they find their adventurous spirit? How will they find the passion to question the extraordinary and use their imaginations? What About the Classics?
The relationships formed and alliances made between characters as they were forced to make life and death decisions gave us hope. Hope that if they could find a way in a tough situation we could find a way. The times I escaped to Oz with all it colorful creatures and fantastic scenery…the unique plant life in the middle Earth that stood high above the characters…wonderful memories that filled my childhood.
How big can your imagination grow in a book with 50 pages…where the only dilemma is limited to one day at school! Our children have lost the desire to explore and fight giant octopi or build a raft and sail the Mississippi, or find the buried treasure while fighting pirates? Do they realize the joys they have missed not learning to fly with Peter Pan?
Before I could read these fantastic works of art my mother introduced a poem by Robert Louis Stevenson to me when I had the chicken pox. It was called “The Land of Counterpane“
When I was sick and lay a-bed
I had two pillows at my head
And all my toys beside me lay
To keep me happy all the day.
And sometimes for an hour or so
I watched my leaden soldiers go,
With different uniforms and drills
Among the bed-clothes, through the hills;
And sometimes sent my ships in fleets
All up and down among the sheets;
Or brought my trees and houses out,
And planted cities all about.
I was the giant great and still
That sits upon the pillow-hill,
And sees before him, dale and plain,
The pleasant land of Counterpane.
What child could not dream with a poem like this as a foundation. I read it to my older boys and the battles the army men would have with the Teenage Mutant Turtles was truly Epic! The reading assignments given to our children today are not using these treasures. Very few of the assignments call for biographical reading. How do we learn about the great men and women who shaped our world? There is no way to understand where we came from if they don’t read about these great people and their lives.
I will just keep trying to introduce my youngest to this world from home…I can’t wait for him to have an adventure while reading one of these Classics!
As for me…I will step off my Soap Box…sip on my coffee and fall back into Victorian England. Time for some Jane Austen! What? Don’t you like to dream? Have a great day…and enjoy that lovely cup of coffee!
I woke up this morning to hear it…the rain clicking up against the window and the soft rush of water in the gutters told me everything I needed to know. Puddles! A good rain was needed after I pulled weeds from the colorless gray grass in our yard yesterday. The bright green weeds stood out drawing attention to themselves. Glad I pulled most of them when I did! The uneven and aging planks of wood stretch across the deck. The falling drops ripple in the small forming puddles.
All I can think about is the wet paw prints that will track from my back door across the white carpet and into the kitchen. My Puddle Memories!
My precious dog hates the rain…she tiptoes through the rain soaked surface. “It is really a funny sight to see.” The cleaning spray and cloth will be set by the back door today ready to apply to the wet paw prints. “Those cute little paw prints have Georgia Red Clay mixed with water.” Georgia Red Clay and white carpets…”What were the original owners of the house thinking?”
I love the rain! “When I can stay indoors…under a blanket…with a good book or movie…”
Today’s daily chore list has grown like those pesky weeds in the yard. I will have to venture out today, in the rain, for a little while. I need to buy a couple of ingredients for dinner, pay a bill, and get a haircut. “Quit shaking your head…you must realize that I had wanted to go walking today.” Hopefully the system will clear by lunch-time and I can squeeze in 2-3 miles!
I will change the sheets on the bed and start the laundry routine then I will load the dishwasher. Once all of this is accomplished I will watch the movie I got from the “Redbox” so I can return it today. I received a free rental code that was only for yesterday and I was busy yesterday and unable to watch the movie. I will gather the list for the grocery store and the bill before heading out for my haircut. I will have to choose my shoes well today…My Puddle Memories!
As children we lived for the opportunity to stomp and splash in every available puddle! With or without the appropriate rain gear. I can remember performing my own version of the song “Singing in the Rain” complete with twirling umbrella and stomping through the rushing water along the curb. I would arrive home, soaked to the bone, and see my mother shaking her head with a towel in hand. She knew and was always prepared! As an adult with children of my own…I experience the same puddle jumping through them. My youngest loves to stand, with his mouth open, facing up to the falling rain. “He doesn’t seem to mind the change in his appearance as he hops onto the school bus.”
We change our routines in subtle ways when it rains. We drive differently, leave a little earlier and know the traffic will resemble a long string of pearls with flashing brake lights. The vehicles in front of you will show you the deeper puddles you may be able to avoid. “No need to attempt the hydroplane maneuvers today!” We dress differently trying to stay clean and presentable in our work place and hope our hair doesn’t frizz. We try to keep the bottom of our shoes dry so we won’t slip and fall…”That would hurt..more than our pride!” The child in us may long to splash about but the grown-up doesn’t have time. Do we?
Maybe we should make time to splash…watching the rippled waves through the puddle formed by the sudden pat of our foot. Who would get hurt? The simple joys we experienced as children have long been replaced by responsibility. Time does not allow frivolous childlike behavior as it dictates our schedules. We rush around like ants on a mission…always working! We may catch ourselves gazing out the window…watching the falling droplets as they splash against the earth. The water rolls down the window and meets with another creating a new path down along the flat surface.
In the distance your phone may ring or computer may signal your reality call and your day continues.
The rain has reached a calm now. The slight sprinkling with occasional reflections in the puddles. My sleeping princess has curled up in the chair with me and is snoring peacefully. The large coffee cup sitting on the table next to me is empty and in need of a refill. My daily chores are once again in the forefront as the reminder chimes escape from my phone. I don’t have much time this morning…gotta pick up the pace. Places to go and people to see! “You know, I really think that saying should have something about coffee to drink!”
The next time it rains try and take time to splash a little….watch the rain for just a few moments…take a moment to remember your Puddle Memories! “I did!”
What memories do have about the rain? Did you love to splash or look up at the sky?
“Really Mom!” “Not in front of the other kids!” “Just drop me here!” We have heard these statements before. They rise up from the depths of fear and hit us smack between the eyes. Our sweet little angels no longer need the last-minute love and advice from Mom and Dad. But….Now that they are older….We can retaliate and do what we do best. Embarrass the heck out of them just for fun!
The wonderful opportunity to totally humiliate them, in a loving way of course, and remind them the “We brought them into this world and We can take them out!” I don’t know how many times I heard that while I was living with my parents. The stories and tales of a child’s actions and decisions will hold many in their seat. The pictures are laid out and strewn to provide the viewer optimal visibility. “This is when the Goat licked him right in his face!….and this is when he got stuck in the rails of the stairway!…He wanted to help me cook and dropped the flour container.” Let’s not forget the girlfriend pictures on the phone. We show everyone….and then we see their pictures. It is a parent’s right to pursue this natural, God-given, form of bragging. After all, we are bragging on them…even if they don’t see it that way.
We sing them the songs they loved to sing, as a child, and they fuss and beg you to stop. “I’ll go up stairs”, “I’m outta here!” are familiar phrases spoken by the almost men in my house. What they don’t realize is the joy we, as parents, receive from seeing the sparkle of light in their eyes as they flash on the memory. “They need to be reminded as much as we do!” We stir the embers of memories and find that they still hold stories of their own. They share what they remember and we add what they have forgotten. “I can remember what I did as a small child because of similar “Memory Sessions” with my parents.” There is nothing wrong with this…They will enjoy “Reliving their Childhood” too as they begin making their own memories.
Grandparents cling to their children’s memories and to the new ones being made with their grandchildren. My dad calls the stories of my sons “isms”. They are specific and funny. My second son recently returned from a 2 week visit with my parents. He recalled a fact trying to show me he knew something I did not know. “Did you know that the uncle, I am named for, used to live in Piper, Alabama?” “Yes I did, I wrote a paper about that very topic in High School.” “I received and A and my teacher quoted me as a source for her Master’s Thesis.” Mom 2 points…son 1. I talked with him about Piper and filled in the gaps in this part of his history.
Parents start out reading Dr. Seuss and end telling the family history to the next generation. Historians and Bards of sorts! This is not a new twist to parenthood. This is just the way it is! Parents have been doing this very task to preserve the family name and history. The stories are passed down through the generations, sometimes as fishing tales, changing to capture the hook in a child’s mind. “Did I tell you about when?…”Do you remember the story about?”…and my favorite “When I was your age!”
“Relive their Childhood..It Can be Fun!” Maybe we do it out of necessity…not wanting to forget how much they needed us. The tender little bundle of joy, gazing up at us with love and happiness, is almost grown and no longer shows absolute love in a simple expression. “Boy, do I miss that little face!” But there is a spark of love in their look of fear when the pictures come out. The beaming spirit reveals itself in quick disputes….”No mom..not the baby pictures!” They are proud, on the inside, when we bring the monuments to their childhood out and parade them proudly to those in the room. These are people who are important to them and they need to know exactly what they are getting in to being associated with our sons. “Did that sound sarcastic?”
We, as parents, do enjoy “Reliving their Childhood“. We need to make all the sentimental connections we can…because we LOVE them and need to remind them in ways other that verbal. But no one said we could not have FUN while we do it! So..pull out the baby pictures and the stories…make some snackies for them…and “Relive their Childhood..It Can be Fun!”