Author Anna Quindlen reminds us not to rush past the fleeting moments. She said: “The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less”
I already posted about this talk by Elder Ballard when I wrote about Oprah's Challenge, but our lesson was on this talk in Relief Society 2 weeks ago and I a related experience.
I like things clean and in their place so I worry about the "getting it done" quite a bit. But after that lesson, and especially this experience, I am definitely going to try to change that. When a moment comes along, I want to live in it and not have to look back at what experience I might have had with my children.
I think it was Thursday last week when Devin came home from work and started cooking dinner. I was sweeping the porch and Jaxon was running around out there with me. I decided to spray the porch off with the hose. It was getting close to dinner being ready and I wasn't really planning on playing with Jaxon. I was going to finish the porch and go inside to help finish getting dinner ready.
As soon as Jaxon saw the hose, he wanted to get wet. He kept trying to walk in the jet of water I was spraying. At first I thought, "I don't want him getting all wet. We're about to eat and I don't want to have to change him and I just want to hurry and get done with this so we can eat." Then I thought, "Wait, so what if he gets wet. I can change him and it's not a big deal. He'll really like it."
So, I let him run in the water and we played and he absolutely loved it. I spent the next few minutes spraying Jaxon while finishing washing off the porch. Those were such sweet moments listing to my boy laugh and watching him have fun. I want to remember how cute he looked running soaking wet toward the water, how he couldn't stop laughing, and most importantly, how I could feel his sweet, innocent spirit. What a blessing he is in my life.
I am thankful for that lesson and the experience I had to remind me to enjoy the moments of motherhood. I don't want to look back when my kids are grown and wish I had spent more time playing with them, teaching them, and having adventures with them.