My oldest child is 16 years old. He had a driving lesson today. What a huge milestone for him. He’s also researching colleges that he wants to go to. Max being 16 has really changed me as a parent. I blinked my eyes and he turned 16. I’ll blink my eyes again and he will be off to college. I am finding myself treasuring moments more than I used to. I can hear my husband telling me to be present in this moment today. I hear you honey, coming back to the present!
Seth took most of today off. Max said that we should all go for a walk together. My heart skipped a beat. He wants to go out with all of us. He suggested a walk. If you have a 16 year old son, you know how exciting this is. Done! I love to take our golden retriever with us and go for a nice long family walk. I treasured every minute. Even when we weren’t in the shade. How often do the five of us, plus my dog, get to do something together?
We just got a new pool. I watched my kids swimming in the pool together and my brain took a giant snapshot. “Enjoy this moment I told myself. Relish this very moment with your kids.” My girls may have started fighting the next minute, but I still loved them all in the pool together. Finding the moments!
I run my kids around a lot. We all do. As I drive them around, they start talking to me and telling me things. Sometimes they are silent. Sometimes they tell me I ask too many questions. Sometimes they talk to me. Sometimes they open up to me. It’s one on one time. I’m finding the moments.
I look at the piles of laundry all over my bedroom. I get overwhelmed for a moment and then I start folding it. I realize how calm and peaceful and even meditative it can feel folding all the laundry. I just turned that around and found a moment for myself.
I got back in my car to go pick up my daughter tonight. My first thought was, “More driving!” Then I realized that I was alone in the peaceful car, and I found myself a moment. A moment of peace. The ability to reset and regroup all by myself.
I went outside to water the flowers and the grass that we are trying to grow. “Another chore you added to your list,” I told myself. Then I went outside and started watering all the beautiful flowers and smiling. I realized that this gives me time with my flowers. I found a moment.
I was texting my daughters to come get their protein shakes this morning and they ignored me. I walked upstairs annoyed to see what they were doing. When I got to my daughter’s room, I realized that they were listening to Taylor Swift music together and singing. They weren’t ignoring me. They didn’t hear me over the music and singing. I smiled, handed them their shakes, and realized that I found myself another precious moment in my day.
Today we had what my family likes to call linner. We tend to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner later in the summer. We were going to eat a very late lunch which usually means we don’t want dinner, so we just call it our linner for the day. All I wanted to do was go jump in my pool, but Seth and I together made everyone a nice salad topped with chicken. We all sat down to eat together, and my daughter Ella told me how nice it was to eat such a healthy meal. Another moment found in my day.
I finally got to my pool. The kids didn’t want to swim but I did. My husband came out to float with me. He told me he was busy doing the dishes and didn’t realize I came outside already. Double the moments right here. Appreciating my husband grilling and doing dishes. Loving being able to float with him in the pool. Found myself double the moments here. I even fell asleep on my float. When do I ever fall asleep during the day? Never! Moment number three right there in the pool. I felt the sun on my face, and I thought about how much I loved summer. I’m stacking up those moments.
I know how crazy motherhood is. I am living it with you. I looked at my calendar tomorrow and giggled to myself. My kids have a lot going on. I’m trying to fit in some work this summer. Time with my kids. Time with my husband. I forgot about the errands I have to run. Let’s not forget keeping our homes in order. Why are they hungry again?
Summer is so short, and I really truly want to soak up the moments. I want to soak up the moments in my days. We find what we look for. Look for the moments all day long. The next time you are in your car. Take a deep breath and find a peaceful moment. The next time the meal needs to be made, smile at the food that you have. The next time you see laundry all over the place, think about me saying how meditative it is to fold it all. Find the moments. Make the moments. Take a long deep breath and enjoy this summer with your kids. Before you blink your child will be 16 like mine is. I am going to go smile and enjoy this moment with my family.
Laughing, Learning, Loving,
Rebecca Greene, LCSW-R
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