In my opinion this is the very best time of year. All of my favorite holidays are still stretched out before us complete with promises of trick-or-treating, cranberry jello, and candy canes. The weather is perfect, I get to do the annual search for my box of sweaters, and the local farms are open for business. The drudgery of winter is a long time off and the promise of spring pollen doesn’t have me quaking in my boots just yet.
We’ll be doing leaf prints this fall too and finger turkeys of course and in honor of Halloween we’ll be busting out all the costumes we own and wearing them regularly until Halloween. Or maybe even Thanksgiving. Or Christmas. Well, all the time really.
Sometimes I get so excited about all of these things that I forget to pay attention to Right Now. Lately I’ve been strolling through the local college campus with my kids urging my toddler to, “Come along,” and not really honoring her need to move slowly through the ever-changing atmosphere. My desire to cover ground and to get a bit of exercise out of the walk are in direct conflict with her need to be present in her life every moment. To her that means picking up a rock every single time we get out of the car or back in it again. There are rocks in the corners of the carseat, rocks in the corners of my kitchen, I find rocks in places that rocks could not possibly be if it weren’t for my toddler. To her being present means finding beauty in every single leaf rather than taking a broad sample. I was feeling a bit done with investigation last week by the time she brought me the 5th leaf, the 10th leaf, the 50th leaf. This was because I was hungry, thirsty, and ready to be done pushing the double stroller up hills. My two year old had to say, “Just look at it Mom!” So I did. I sat back down and I looked at another 50 after that. She will teach me volumes, this little girl. I just have to pay attention. That’s not hard. Why do we make it so?