24 April 2012

Back from the Beyond

This poor little blog has been choking and sputtering for nearly four years since I started it. When I originally started, I had tagged it with a little line about finally getting around to doing something I always wanted to do...and then I really didn't do it. Common theme with me, really. Well, I am really ready to change that, and I am challenging myself to post every day for the next thirty in order to form the writing habit. From there, who knows where I will go? There are novels simmering away in my mind, and I would really like to see them actually boil over onto the page. If I can form this writing habit, perhaps I will make this other something I always wanted to do happen, too.

Now, who is going to want to read this? This self-indulgent, solipsistic navel-gazing? The plan  is really not to spend too much time navel-gazing and to engage in meaningful conversation (even if it's just with myself) about the things that matter on each particular day. Today, the topic on my mind is spending quality time with my child. I am a semi-ashamed-to-admit-it-workaholic. I enjoy my work and am pretty good at what I do, but I know that these young years of excitement and wonder with my daughter are not going to last much longer. Soon, "Mom come over here and watch this!" is going to be replaced by "Not now, mom, can't you see I'm (insert more important teenage activity here)." I don't want to look back and think 'What was so important that I allowed myself to miss all of this?' So I'm stopping. I'm stopping the missing and starting to be more in the moment with my awesomewonderfulsillysweetimaginative kid. She hit the decade mark just a month and a half ago. I've already seen her inner-tween poking it's wily head out every now and again. I want to know and enjoy this part of her better before that metamorphosis comes to fruition.

Tonight, we wasted enjoyed an hour on the couch just being silly and laughing. We were talking baby talk and then pretending to be confused over what the other said. It just got more and more ridiculous as each minute ticked by, and pretty soon we were both laughing so hard that we couldn't even remember what got us started laughing in the first place. Probably some stab at toilet humor...yes, we're sophisticated here. When all was said and done, and I was rubbing my aching sides and seeking a drink of water to quench my laughter-parched throat, it struck me just how important that time was. These hints have been coming at me with more volume and frequency over the past few weeks, but it took the anvil to my head of just laughing on the couch to make me see that the limited time I have with this little person is quickly sliding through my fingers. 

So, here we are. It's now four hours after that epiphanic giggle-fest, and I started dreaming up and scheming ways that I can squeeze every last ounce of enjoyment into the minutes, hours, days, and months I have with her. Mind you, I realize that I yet have years with this human being as part of my life, and I have no doubt that we're going to be close despite differences in opinion over dress, dating, and the like. I know that our relationship will evolve and change in many ways over the course of our lives and that we'll learn many things from one another. I just know that I have to start enjoying her right now and this is the key to learning how to appreciate the joy that is a part of my life each day. 

Now that I have poured all of that out, I have something to share...two somethings, actually. First is this lovely blog that I stumbled upon in my brainstorming:
Homemade Kids - I have explored a page full of writing and am hooked. 
50 Things to Do Before You're 11 & 3/4 - This list is fantastic. The idea originated in the UK and was based on a National Trust report that cited a decline in children's time spent outdoors and the consequences of this decline. 
This is where I will be starting in my mission for more quality time. My daughter and I already began exploring the 50 Things site and have logged information about some of our adventures. 

To anyone who reads this post and has children or good ideas about spending quality time with loved ones, I would love to hear from you about your ideas. If you have any websites to suggest, please do that, as well. I am really looking forward to getting this conversation started. I will be checking back in tomorrow with the next thought that, like a pebble, is making ripples in my mind. 

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