Thursday, February 16, 2012

Marking the Passage of Time

At the park yesterday, Flannery found a stack of logs on top of which she declared herself to be the "Queen of All the Playground!"    The logs were newly cut and perfect for counting the rings that mark the tree's growth each year.  So, we counted, and the tree was over 40 years old.  Some of the years were obviously years of bounty and moisture, when the tree grew a good bit, and other years looked like they were perhaps drought years, because the rings were thinner.

It made me think about how our life is so much like that in retrospect.  Years of bounty, ease, health.  Seasons of illness, fear, grief.  Some years we grow so much.  And other years, we just hang on for dear life hoping to make it through intact.

I hope that one day, my daughter will look back on this childhood of hers as years of "thick ringed" growth.  As much as our life has been at times uncertain--with Robi job-hunting, and me being sick, and being stretched for money and time, and figuring out life in a new city--I really think that these years with Flannery home with us are "bounty years."  It's such a beautiful thing to get to watch her grow and learn, and to be able to be a part of her everyday.  I know it won't be like that forever, and she'll be off to college and making her own life in the blink of an eye.  As it should be.

But for now, I'm tracing my fingers on the rough rings of a tree trunk.  Listening to Flanna hum a Valentine song.  Watching the sunlight stream through her hair.   Marking the passage of time.

And trying to hold all these things in my heart.

Has the past year been a year of thin or thick ringed growth for you?   Does time seem to move quickly or slowly for you at this point in your life? 

1 comment:

  1. This one made me cry. Time with our children is so fleeting. Laney just cut her first tooth. I will never see her gummy smile again :( Love you all! Miss you!