Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Circle of Life

Today is a beautiful sunny day. The snow from Saturday’s storm is slowly melting from the rooftops and the leaves on the trees are glistening. The colors of gold, green, orange, and brown are pretty against the blue skies and a pair of rain boots to walk through the wet fallen foliage and leftover snow is all that is needed for a walk outside.Taking a stroll through the backyard has me thinking of the past summer when I’d walk barefoot on the grass before pulling up a lawn chair to read in the sun. I think of the months to come when snow will be piled to the back windows. I love the snow though and I’ll enjoy the stillness of a cold winter day, almost as much as I will appreciate the way the sun warms my body next July when I return to sit on the back deck again.

It’s true what they say; that the older we get, the more quickly time seems to pass. I now write in a room that was added to our home in 2003, eight years ago when my youngest son was just three and a half years old. I look at the couch I am sitting on; it is the first piece of furniture my husband and I purchased (from a yard sale), back in 1988 when we were married, twenty-three years ago. I was just twenty years old at the time. My eldest child will turn twenty herself in January. It doesn’t seem possible that we moved into this house when she was just one week old. Skimming the perimeter of the room is a construction paper chain, each link identifying a book that someone in our family has read. The chain has almost made it around the entire room, a large room, but it’s been quite some time since any of us added a link. Yet, being the bookworms we all are, new links or not, we’ve all been reading. If we had kept up with this chain, we easily could have circled the room by now, and we probably could have done it twice. But I am comforted by the fact that the links have stopped the chain, that there’s still another ten feet of wall before the chain will meet the beginning links. My husband thinks we’re crazy for keeping this chain in the room. The colors of the paper have faded and it’s probably not something Martha Stewart would approve of as a stylish piece of home decor. But the kids and I would be appalled to have it taken down before it has had a chance to be finished.

I’m struck by how quickly each season passes, how summer turns to fall then to winter. I stop to soak in the magic of each season, thinking these pauses to appreciate will prolong each one, but no, the clock keeps ticking just as fast as it does when I am almost too busy to look away from my work. There is no secret to making time go more slowly. If there is, I have not learned the trick. Whether we cut a strip of paper to record our life’s chapters or not, the chain links continue to be added and the chain is lengthened. I just hope that when the final link is added, that I’ll have the chance to circle around again.

No comments:

Post a Comment