Friday, March 09, 2007

Not Trading Your Place Away Too Soon...


So I took Lennon to the vet again this morning... he's been drinking lots of water the past two months and that's always a worry. I sat with him on the bench in the waiting room and when I'd peek inside his carrier, well, if looks could have killed, I'd be dead by now. Those cat eyes! But I peeked again later and--I'd never seen him do this--he hung his head, burrowed his face into the towel in his carrier. And he refused to raise his head even when I called him or Little Waiting Room Munchkin Girl (who looked adorable, like what's-her-name on How The Grinch Stole Christmas,) peeked-in and chatted jibberish to him.

I hate this. And I decided today I'm not taking him back until May for his bi-annual check-up, even though the vet is a tad concerned about Lennon (remember, he's diabetic) and is wondering if we should do the thing where Lennon stays there all day so they can regulate what his blood is doing at certain hours.

No, I can't do that to him. And since the vet isn't sure this is necessary, then I'm just going to say no.

Anyway.

Lennon (who acts like a happy-dog-in-a-car on the way home) got dropped off at home, was given a kitty snack for being good, and then I left for the river. Well, by way of Burger King where I bought a kid's meal and a decaf. (Which reminds me, did anyone try your local Burger King's coffee after I recommended it? Just wondering.) I drove into the parking lot at the river and nearly cried--too many weeks had passed since I'd been there and I'd forgotten how wonderful the water is when it's gleaming-grey with huge chunks of ice glittering and floating downstream and geese are paddling around and the fallen trees at the edges are like frozen white statues.

It was too much, too glorious, but I stayed anyway and read and ate lunch and drank decaf so incredible I wondered if they'd given me the real stuff, by mistake.

And I thought of all you moms of young children.... how you probably have days where you'd love to have my fancy-free, drive-to-the-river-and-eat-and-read-and-dream-on-a-sunny-day life.

And then I thought of myself, an older mom, an empty-nester... and how some days I miss what you have. Sometimes I miss having that little blond pony-tailed girl sitting beside me with her envelope of french fries, telling me about what Matt did at school that day and asking, "Can we feed the seagulls again like last time?" And taking our loaf of bread and tossing chunks in the sky for the gulls to snatch away.

Oh, childhood sails past like those huge sheets of ice in the river... until you are left only with the memory of what was yours for a moment.

And I guess I just wanted to hand you young moms that message, encourage you to just appreciate your children now, for someday they'll move on and you'll have hundreds of days alone at the river to reflect upon this one day you are living right now... and to wish all your days had not sailed down rivers of Time so fast.

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