Remembering what’s important

February 28, 2006

I’ve been lost in thought.

So many things going on in the Blogosphere lately…

…a dear blogging friend riding out the twists and turns of an emotional rollercoaster.

…a mother temporarily separated from her young daughter while she fights to overcome a disease which threatens to make that separation permanent.

…a blogger who might soon lose a friend and neighbor, a single father to a 12-year-old son.

And just last night (or this morning, technically, since it was 2:30 AM) Deputy Dad was almost in tears when he arrived home from work. He had just worked a house fire in which a 9-month-old baby boy was severely burned. Before he even took off his duty belt, Deputy Dad went into Big Boy’s room, gently lifted him out of his crib, and held him while he slept.

Everywhere I look, I am reminded of how fragile and unpredictable life is, and how precious my babies are.

Each weekday afternoon, after I pick up the girls from school and Big Boy from the sitter, we rush home and begin our afternoon/evening routine: everyone gets a snack; we do homework; then the girls go outside to play (if the weather’s nice and nothing else is on the agenda) while I run around in a tizzy, cooking supper, chasing Big Boy, picking up stray jackets/socks/shoes/toys, refereeing the girls; then I call them in for showers and supper, feed the family, clean the kitchen, bathe Big Boy; then read his bedtime story and put him to bed; and read a short book (or just a chapter or two, if it’s a longer book) with the girls so they don’t get to bed late. I pretty much run from the moment we walk in the door until I get all the kids to bed.

But today…Today was just beautiful. It was almost 90°F this afternoon. Today I looked at the clear sky and the sunshine and remembered what’s really important to me.

And today……Well, today it was more important to dig in the dirt and play in the water hose with my kids than to make sure everything that needed doing got done early so everyone got to bed on time.

Tonight my daughters and I read all eight chapters of Junie B. Jones and the Mushy Gushy Valentime.

Tonight we read together and laughed uncontrollably and shushed each other’s giggling fits as we tried not to wake the sleeping toddler in the next room.

Tonight bedtime was something that came after we finished reading the book, rather than something that cut short our reading time.

Tonight the girls got to bed much later than usual.

Sometimes bedtime isn’t so very important.