Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The Wishing Well

I don't know why, but I happened to glance into the tall, metal vase (that serves as an umbrella stand) next to the front door in our entryway.  I found seven shiny, 'pretend' coins from Clay's cash register.  I thought about it... and then... it all made perfect sense.  It wasn't just a toddler throwing things into anywhere for whatever reason or no reason at all.  This was his wishing well and those shiny, 'pretend' coins... those were his seven wishes.

We spent several afternoons at a wishing well last summer.  It was at a historical site, the home of an author, in this tucked away/sleepy and yet perfect forest.  If you can imagine a place where little fairies would live, fluttering around the flower garden down by the lake through the trellis made of vines hopping from lilly pad to lilly pad in the tiny pond... that place exists.  We found it--it is magical.  And yet, it is a place forgotten by many, appreciated only by a few.

And the wishing well... I think Clay and I are among the only ones that have active wishes in there.  Clay would dig his coins out of the organza bag and throw each one in as fast as he could.  "Wish.  Wish.  Wish," he would say as they would sink to the bottom.  And I always stole one from him when he wasn't looking.  I already knew my wish... and I closed my eyes and tossed the coin into the well.  "Wish."

And now, I am knee-deep in my own craziness of life as a mama-of-two.  In the midst of... (deep breath)... seasonal cold catching, temper-tantruming, sleep training, diaper changing, monitors beeping, picky eating, laundry forgetting, schedule creating, grocery shopping, nose wiping, carpet sweeping, doctor visiting, bottle cleaning, shoe tying, story reading, car seat fastening, supper making, question answering, boo boo kissing, snack preparing, choo choo playing, medicine giving... sleep-not-getting...
where I find myself doing it-- wishing my life away.

I can hear my own thoughts running through my head, "I need to just get through this."  I wish for the future to be here now.  I wish for easier times when I will have more time, more sleep, more, more, more.  And then... I stop.  I look around.  And I see through the chaos of the big picture and into the little moment that is right in front of me.

I see Clay going over to Lilah, shaking her hand and saying, "Nice to meet cha."  I see Lilah's face break out in a huge smile every time Corey says, "Ahhhhh, man," in his best motor voice.  I see my boy's smiling face when he wakes up from nap and says, "Hi mommy.  I'm all done napping."  I see tiny little baby toes peeking out from the bubbles in her bath.  I see Corey drop to the floor in .2 seconds ready for a quick game of hide-and-seek.  I see Clay with his face a foot away from Lilah's saying, "She is just so adorable."  I see a tiny little hand grasp onto my finger.  I see the happiness, the love, the present time.  And I wouldn't wish it away for anything.

My neighbor came over for a visit today... and she told me about a conversation with a stranger that took place twenty years ago.  A conversation that has stuck with her all this time.  She said her little one was acting up and she remembers feeling angry with him.  That's when a stranger came up to her and told her not to be so mad at him.  She said, "Someday, you will look back on this precious time and give anything to have it back."  She told me this story with tears in her eyes and a cough in her throat and I knew... she agreed.  I was now the girl she was passing this little secret along to.  And I feel happy to know this secret now before it's too late and I wished my time away.

This is life.  This is living.  But me... I am loving.  And I will no-longer-ever-again wish my life away.  Life is not, "Let's just get through this."  Life is so much more than that.

For these little moments... they melt me.  They make me gush and gush.  They make my heart full.  And now, I look for them in each day.  And each day, I find more and more and more.  I find those moments that may seem ordinary-- but there is some magic there.  I capture them in my mind and tie them up with string only to be reopened later.  And each night, I can't help but relive these moments like a filmstrip of my day before my thoughts finally drift off into dreams.  And as for those moments... I will remember them... always.

And I promise you, if you look really hard, you will find them too in the most unexpected places and in the most unexpected ways.        

And someday when the kids are grown, and I go back to that wishing well, I will still be making a wish.  But I already know, my wish will be to turn back the hands of time and do it all over again.  I told you this was a magical place... with perhaps a magical wishing well.  My wish from last summer?  It came true... and isn't she lovely?


  1. goosebumps....like usual! Love your writing. Love you, my friend!

  2. Thanks Holly!! So sweet of you! Thank you for following our story. I would love to get together sometime!! Xoxo