Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Big Picture

Do you get the “Big Picture?”

I was recently listening to my husband complaining about the laundry that needed to folded. It was a beautiful, sunny day – perfect beach weather. Yes, there were things that needed to be done around the house, but, again, it was a beautiful, sunny day.

While it stresses me out, too, just thinking of all that needs to be done and fixed around this house, I am constantly aware that it could all end instantly. In the time it takes to snap your finger, you could be on the ground, waiting for the ambulance to arrive, or worse than that – already gone. This sounds a bit ghoulish, but true.

I should explain.

When I was 18, my dad suddenly fell ill. By the end of the day, he was diagnosed with renal failure (kidney disease) with out only one working kidney and that working only at 20% capacity. This week marked 23 years after his death when I was only 21. I was the oldest of the children, the youngest only 2 ½. In fact, I am older now than he was when he died.

I do not need any reminders of this trying two years of my early adulthood. It marks pretty much my every move. When I look at my children inside the house, plopped in front of the television on a beautiful, sunny day, I am reminded that it could all be over sooner rather than later, in the time it takes to snap my finger. I quickly pile the dishes in the sink to be washed after they go to bed or even to school the next day, and search for the sunscreen (or just the car keys to take them to a park or some other outing, however short). When we return, the dishes will still be there, but they won’t mind at all, nor will their brains be scrambled by mindless cartoons. They’ll just be sitting in the sink, dirty and waiting for a wash, along with the laundry at the bottom of the basement stairs or in the washing machine, waiting to be transferred to the dryer.

None of these things will matter in the long run. There will still be “things” to do to maintain the house, but there won’t always be little children running around my house, waiting for fun time with their Mom and Dad.

So, what will you do with your children today?

Send your best ideas to share with other moms and dads while all of our houses wait for us.

1 comment:

Kristy Shreve Powers said...

Tomorrow, I will walk my 1-year-old son to the park so he can play with other kids and go swimming. I'll do this even if it feels too hot and humid to walk uphill pushing a stroller. You're right; I want him to remember times he got to play with me instead of times he watched a video while Mom cleaned.