A Rainbow of Holiday Miracles -the gift of time
Time has a way of flying by all too quickly. Busy at work, busy with family, busy with friends, busy with community. Busy with chores, busy paying bills, busy running errands. Busy, busy, busy.
When my husband and I decided to get married, 15 years ago this month, we also made the commitment to raise my granddaughter should life turn out that way. We knew that decision would shift our lives in an entirely new direction. But we also knew it would enrich our lives in wonderful ways.
Sure enough, 6 short weeks later, we were parents to our just-turned-3-year-old granddaughter, Rachael. Interesting, busy years awaited us. It was Gene's first parenting experience and he has excelled in his role of Grandpa/Parent. We've been the troop Girl Scout cookie parents, taken pictures of the AYSO soccer teams' games and written up game summaries for parents. We've shared driving duties to horse-back riding lessons and piano lessons. The house has been turned upside down with glitter, and art projects and slumber parties. Then there were the back-to-school nights, the parent-teacher conferences, the hours of homework supervision, the quest to find the right high school fit.
The years have flown by, and now Rachael is almost ready to head off to college and a new phase in her life will begin. Although she is champing at the bit for independence and looking forward to beginning her adulthood, it's a bit frightening for her, too.
Gene and I are ready to embark on our own new life journey, one which we hope will allow us to spend more time with each other. The time has come for us to create a new set of memories for ourselves, new traditions. It's time to take a step back from the day-to-day responsibilities of caring for others. Although we are ready, and are looking forward to this next stage in our lives, it's a bit frightening for us, too.
One set of memories we cherish was Christmas two years ago, a time when life slowed down for us. Rachael, her mother and little sister went to Boston to spend Christmas with my daughter Susan and her husband, Gary. For 7 days Gene and I had time -- time for the two of us, time when our workloads were minimal, time to celebrate my birthday, Christmas, and our anniversary.
We chose to spend a few of those days at Point Reyes Station, California, and explored the beaches and trails of Pt. Reyes National Seashore. One windy, blustery day we were gifted by the lovely rainbow pictured at the top of this post. Later that afternoon, the land and sea came together in perfect fashion as we hiked to Tomales Point, another gift. All was right in our world. We had an inkling of what our lives might be like in the future, when we could enjoy the gift of time.
Like every family, our family has many new experiences ahead of us in the coming years, many "firsts." I know some will be challenging, others joyous and simple. Finding our way in uncharted waters will be exhilarating, but we'll have our difficult times, too, as we move forward into our new lives.
Through it all, however, we'll appreciate the gift of time.
Time-the holiday miracle.