Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Because they are...

Thanksgivings. Graduations. Birthdays. These days, and others like them are usually the ones we remember forever. We painfully anticipate their slow arrival. We invite our friends and family to special dinners commemorating the event. We dress nice, take pictures, and look back on the photos with cheerful remembrance. But, what of the days in between these monumental moments that we are counting by, the ones that seem delightfully mundane and mere filler between timeless snapshots?

As I watch my parents grow older and happier together, stand by and witness my nieces and nephews progress into real live people, and even as I look in the mirror and see myself continue to mature (slow as it may be), I realize that it isn’t the moments that are tucked away into our photo albums (or folders full of digital images nowadays) that really matter. The moments that define us seem to be the ones we let fly by, or even worse, ‘suffer’ through on the way to the next holiday.

We take off of work (if we’re lucky enough), we make detailed, meticulous plans (if you’re me), and breath the air in the atmosphere of ‘special event’ stress (once again if you’re me) during these moments and forget the ones that really matter. We don’t photograph simple and loving phone conversations with our parents or friends. We don’t use PTO to mark another day we are healthy and happy along with our friends, family, and other miscellaneous loved ones. We rarely shell out the money for a card and stamp to let someone know they are loved for simply being themselves. No. They had to have survived another year in this world, walked a stage in a silly cap and gown, and/or given us a gift.

Why are these ‘filler days’ merely boxes that are crossed off our calendars? If anyone knows me, they know I am impatient, picky, and more often than not have something to complain about. Now, I doubt this will change any of these things, but I wanted a written and posted statement of exactly how grateful I am. Now that I’m working, I may not be coming home for the holidays, so I plan on sitting back and enjoying my phone call to my mom during the end of my lunch break, emails from my siblings sharing beautiful photographs from monumental (and not so monumental) moments in their and their children’s lives, and breath I sigh of relief every time I walk into my apartment safe and sound without a voicemail relaying troubling or tragic news.

Although I will always love and celebrate the ‘special’ days that banks are closed and mail isn’t delivered, I will also try and inwardly remind myself to equally appreciate the days in between. The days that require no invitation, ironed shirt, or gift. The days that are beautiful and memorable simply because they are. Although I may not have a picture or funny anecdote from these days, I had them, and hopefully, will continue to have many more.


Abby said...

Beautifully written. Beautiful. Love you, BIL! Love, your SIL

Abby said...

Forgot to mention that I LOVE the picture!