-- Sir Isaac Newton
Tonight, as I rolled my hot dogs up in pizza dough to make Dogs in a Sleeping Bag (aka: big pigs in a blanket) for a get together tomorrow, I kept getting visits from my son. He was hungry and asking for snacks. First, a bagel. Then, a hot dog, right off my baking tray. Next, a bowl of strawberries, with lots of wheat germ and a little chocolate syrup. He came back again, for more strawberries. The wheat germ was plentiful, but the chocolate syrup was pushing hard for it's last sputter. It made the most grotesque sounds as it attempted to clear itself of it's last drops of syrup. As I stood in my kitchen, rolling the dogs, then cleaning the kitchen, loading the dishwasher, and receiving visits time and again from my son, I realized how lucky I am.
Quietly, in the warm kitchen, I stood thinking of how quickly life goes by.
All the things that I thought mattered, didn't. What mattered in that moment was the baking, the cleaning, and those sweet little moments with my son. Things that I may have been pondering, examining, or projecting were irrelevant. Life is ever-changing and the only constant I have is the moment that I am experiencing. Life is short. I've learned that banking on a future, however optimistically practical, can throw you for a loop. Expecting nothing and being in the moment, experiencing what's happening as it's happening, and feeling what you are feeling, is enough.
After my son went to sleep, I spoke with my friend Carly, who is currently living in Florida. We spoke for over an hour, reminiscing over the past, and updating each other on our current lives. The last time we really spent any good amount of time together was about five years ago. We were both single, and she spent her weekends sleeping at my house. I hate sleeping alone, so when my son would go to his dad's, she would sleep over. We would talk all night, 'til the sun came up most nights, and I honestly couldn't imagine wanting life to change. We talked until we were hoarse, after a night of dancing, scantily clad, regardless of the fact that it was 21* outside.
Life did change, though. Slowly. The change crept in, and by the time it was complete, neither she nor I had realized it. We hadn't felt the jutting thrust of a new direction. It eased its way in. I imagine that the neighbors, who I am sure believed that she was my girlfriend, figured we'd broken up. A new car was in the driveway on weekends, my (then) boyfriend, and the transition felt seamless. I never expected things to change, but they did, and surprisingly, it was okay.
Tonight, she reminded me of those carefree times, and also of all the reasons I love her. She told me how special she thinks I am. I needed to hear it. And even though she is miles away, a 24 hour drive, she's still as close to me as she was 5 years ago.
As the New Year approaches, as I begin to rid myself of the old, unnerving crap that has kept me feeling blue, I am hopeful that I will notice more and more of those moments. I want to allow it all to unfold, slowly. I am hopeful that I will cherish the moments I experience for what they are, without expectation.
Feliz Navidad. Prospero Año y Felicidad.