Frozen in Time.

June 5th, 2012

FREEZE – I wanted to scream. JUST STOP RIGHT THERE I was ready to yell. But didn’t. Instead, I breathed as much of it in as possible. A moment, an image, a gift. I stood in complete silence, fully present and totally grateful. A second or two later and it was gone. Poof- done.

She, wearing her newly purchased 2nd hand bright blue poncho from a thrift store with threads hanging down. She, with her unbrushed chlorinated hair matted by the hotel swimming pool. She, with her spaghetti-sauce stained green track pants. She, with the sun lighting her face and a shoelace undone. She, swinging my hand as we crossed that road. She, without self criticism or judgement, free from the worries about what others may think. She, so fully alive and happy to be with just me. She, open to what the day would hold and so trusting of the outcomes. She, believing all of life is wonderful. She, my beautiful daughter without a care in the world.

Reality and dream blurred for one perfect moment. I saw her with fresh eyes. With delighted, thankful and full-to-the-brim love eyes.  Time stopped and waited for me a moment, letting me linger to breathe her into my heart.

“Here, take a minute” whispered Time, knowing a mother’s craving for life to slow. A mother’s need to notice and just let be. Traffic stopped and voices faded as stillness placed a peaceful hand on the world around me.

I Pushed desperation and fear to the side.

“Not now”, I scolded as they tried to interfere, teasing me to hold on as tight as I could. Pestering me to cling so she wouldn’t grow up. Knowing a mother’s fear as time flashes by.

No, instead I watched. Gently, quietly.  The magical number 9. 9 years of believing, dancing, being. Right there, crossing a road in a poncho by my side. I looked as hard as I could without interrupting, commenting or showing too much attention. A moment frozen. And then, without warning we had crossed the road and she skipped off ahead. The moment gone, just like that. So I folded this perfect picture, and looked for someplace safe to keep it. I could not trust my mind to remember these details and bring forward the complete beauty and innocence in that moment. No I would surely forget this perfection with the busyness of life. So I give it to now to you dear reader, in hopes that you will remind me. Remind me of 9, and the truth it holds as she skips into the days ahead.

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  1. eyerly says:

    LOVE**** this! Now that is enjoying the moment- FULLY. Even though it has passed, you #relished it, and wear the memory in all it’s beautiful details = )

  2. wisetrout says:

    Those poignant moments continue and thank goodness for the awareness to soak it in for a moment. I still long to hold my first born on my lap, cradle him, rocking and singing. He’s 15, 6’4″ and continually asserting his independence, as he should. However, in a quiet moment recently, I told him of my desire to carry him like I did when he was a baby. I told him I still feel that protective awe and tenderness I did when he was tiny. His reply, “Oh mummy, I wish you *could* hold me like a baby!” We settled for a couch snuggle. Breathe it in and enjoy!! 

  3. Ellie says:

    Touching ! Beautiful, calling  up memories more than 50 years old.

  4. Margaret says:

    Thank you for capturing something so fleeting and ethereal about mothering for the rest of us. Brava.

  5. Virginia Urbach says:

    Thank you for a beautiful blog. I’ve emailed this to my friend.

  6. Diana says:

    This is from the perspective of a mother who REALLY loves her daughter- that soul love that so much of us didn’t get from our own mothers, but realizing the meaning only when we become mothers, ourselves. Beautiful.

  7. Rita says:

    Meg, you touch my heart and soul with everything you write.   Thank you.    Am leaving for UK tonight to visit family & friends for 6 weeks.    My love to all    Rita x

  8. Elaine says:

    So moving for me, Meg.  Thank you.  My children are “40 somethings”, and I reach for those memories, wishing that I had frozen time in those moments to fully remember and feel the magic.

  9. Joan Cook-Howe says:

    I read Elaine’s comment and thought of how my 46 year-old touched my heart yesterday.  During the dinner that he and his wife had prepared he chatted amiably, serving up the meal, and all the while his eyes rested on the folk around the table, especially his daughters.  At 16 and almost 21 the girls are tugging at his heart and, watching him watching them, he still tugs at  my heart.  It never stops, just changes emotional colors.  I still treasure the moments. 

  10. Deshna says:

    Meg- I love this! It brought tears to my eyes! I go through this everyday with my little/big 9 year old girl. Thank you for the gentle reminder to slow down and appreciate the imperfect perfection that she is. 

  11. Petra says:

    Meg -thank you for the beautiful writing and for capturing so exquisitely what we all feel as mothersI too go through this but with my 15 year old.  With different moments of watching her start to make adult decisions that will inevitably take her away – to build on the foundations we have so carefully laid. The mixture of enormous pride and genuine ache.  I relish every moment that she comes and puts her arms around me, still holding my pinkie (linked in hers because it is less obvious) when we walk in the mall, when she snuggles in on a cold morning……yes I take the time……and I remember all that when she pushes her boundaries as is expected when they are 15!!

  12. Virginia Urbach says:

    Thank you for this blog. I have emailed to another friend.

  13. Cathy says:

    Beautiful!  My daughter is 8 and we have those moments too.  But today I needed a gentle reminder to slow down again and notice– thank you for that!  All best wishes to you & your family.

  14. Loved this.  Wish I had that control.

  15. Faaima says:

    Oh wow, you have left me breathless as this is how I am currently feeling about my 10 year old daughter. She is my everything. All my hopes and dreams are wrapped up in her. Oh why is time so cruel!

  16. Marilyn says:

    You have truly captured a magical moment.  I related strongly and longingly to your words.  I know that I have forgotten the clarity of many moments with my own children like the one you described; however, I choose to believe that the experience of them and the magic of them still live in my heart and the importance of those moments have become part of the layered complexity of emotion that has created my relationships with my children.  It’s all good…but wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could easily recall such simple, important times like a picture in a photo album or a video clip.  It would make being an old lady so much more enjoyable…