As time passes, it is clearer and clearer to me that the most important work we have to do upon this earth is in loving, and showing love to, and caring for the people around us, starting from the people closest to us.
I am very privileged in this sense, at this season of my life. I have many people to love. I have little children at home, who need me many hours out of each day, and therefore I have no lack of opportunity to give love and care in a thousand practical ways. I also get to stay home and do all those things myself. My children never had a diaper changed by anybody else, except perhaps occasionally a Grandma.
Please don't get me wrong, I'm not some kind of perfect person. I have low tolerance for whining. I snap if a child shows open disobedience. I have all these hobbies and projects and things I like to do on my own, and like every mother of young children, I sometimes desperately wish for a good long restful stretch of quiet time.
But then I look back at the time when Shira was a baby and motherhood was new and overwhelming and I cried because I felt as though I'd never sleep again. Now she's a 6-year-old who gets up and dressed on her own, goes out to the yard to feed the dog and collect eggs, and then proudly tells me all about it. She reads, writes, has her own friends and folds her own socks. I have no idea how this happened, but facts are staring me in the face. It's bittersweet, really. Seasons chase seasons, and as much as I'd want to stop time, even for a day, I can't.
All I can do is enjoy. Enjoy the little downy head that is resting on my chest. Enjoy the playdough art and creative spelling. Enjoy the child who is small enough to sit on my lap, because someday soon she won't be. Enjoy the full house, because one day these little birds will fly out to make their own nest.
Live, love and enjoy the gift. The gift of today.