Monday, July 13, 2009

The secrets to happiness.

As I get older, I find myself more reflective on the past, to my younger days, to friends and family that I have lost touch with, or to experiences which, in their time, seemed would last forever, but are now blurred, jumbled pieces of memories. Through the innovations of the internet, recently I have become reacquainted with part of that past. People about whom I haven't thought in years are suddenly brilliant in my mind as though it was only yesterday that we said goodbye, or didn't. I am back in high school and college having the time of my life, and the dreams of my youth are once again alive in my head. But as exciting as it is to reconnect, I start to wonder how I let it all slip away. As time marches on we take for granted that what we have today, we will have tomorrow. But few things, if any, are forever. Each chapter of life is a transition into another, and there is no going back, only reminiscing.

But then I'm back in the present. We've had such an exciting couple of years, but they've passed so quickly (in hind sight), and now I want things to slow down a bit so I can enjoy more time with my family as it is today. Manu is growing up so fast; I'm afraid he'll be driving and dating before I'm ready for him to be out of diapers. I don't want these moments to become distant memories. I also don't want to live in the past. I think the secret to happiness is understanding that right now, you are in a place at which you'll wish you could get back to sometime in your future. Enjoy it and make today the best day it can be.

As for living in the moment, Manu has had another first; his first Fourth of July! On the 2nd, he and his classmates at school had a little parade around the parking lot. It was so cute seeing all of those little ones trying to stay in line! He began the 4th by channeling his support to mommy and daddy on their 6.2 mile run in the annual Bluegrass 10K, from the comfort of his crib, asleep! After we hobbled home we met up with the rest of the family in town for the weekend, and headed downtown to the festivities. Manu really enjoyed the parade, especially the horses and the marching bands. The politicians made him cry though, so now I'm sure he's my boy! After the parade we attempted to walk the streets, checking out the crafts and food vendors, but the drizzle that had gently dampened the parade was starting to pour, so we got back to the car and headed home. That night we hosted friends and family for what should have been a fun evening for the little guy. Instead he decided that nothing was going to please him, so he cried himself to sleep without finishing dinner, and drifted off well before the fireworks.

Manu is becoming quite the little climber. He insists on traversing the stairs himself, rather then being carried. He has even taken to climbing into his own high chair when he's ready to eat! He's learned to place objects on the ground and stand on them in order to get a little bit taller. This has caused more than a little commotion, as this puts him just tall enough to pull down anything left near the edge of the kitchen table! On the sweeter side, he is blowing kisses to everyone, and kissing mommy and daddy on the cheek. Every time he sees a cow he tries to moo, but it comes out more like, "mmmummmm." He likes to go "bye-bye," and runs to the front door squealing with excitement at the prospect. His hand-eye coordination is improving to where he can make precise movements wit his little hands. He has recently mastered putting all of the wooden rings on the little pole, though he still can't catch a big rubber ball if you roll it slowly at him, LOL. We set up a little pool out back that he liked well enough, but he preferred exploring the back yard, so he did while mommy and daddy sat in the 12 inches of water and dreamed of the beach! Manu is a lot of fun right now, with more smiles and fewer tears. He is like a little sponge, soaking up all that is to learn around him. We're learning a lot too in the process.

But back to the past: Life has turned out nothing like that 17yo imagined it would, but any change along the way would have altered the outcome, and where I find myself today. Sometimes I wonder where I would be if I had done this or that, but then I have to consider the cost; what would I give up now to have what I thought I wanted years ago? That's an easy one, nothing!


  1. Love this. One of the most valuable lessons for me as a parent has been to really learn to live **fully** in the present moment & stay connected to what I really care about. Still, I find myself shocked that my youngest is turning 6 in a few weeks. The "busy-ness" of life can really creep in & make it seem like we're moving on fast forward!

    Oh, and I'm with Manu -- politicians make me cry, too!!!! :-)

  2. Wise words . . . it's to easy to forget that we will never get a single day back. Thanks for the reminder to enjoy life as it unfolds.
    -- Nancy