I saw the sweetest scene this morning. I was on my way to Curves, and was grumbling to myself because I was behind schedule and was going to get to work late. And I was plotting how I could get the kids to move faster in the morning and how I was going to get Yakir to go to sleep earlier and stop sleeping in my bed and stop climbing on the counter and...... And then I saw a scene that I just loved.
There is a pick-up point for soldiers in Efrat on Sunday mornings and I saw a kid in uniform getting out of his mom’s car. As he walked away with his big bag slung over his shoulder, his mom jumped from the car and said, “Wait!”
He turned around, expecting that he had forgotten something important.
Running after him, she yelled, “I have to get a picture before you go!” Of course, he turned in his tracks and doubled over in embarrassment, but she was not to be deterred. She grabbed one of his friends, had them pose, and captured that moment as her son took off for one of his first weeks in the army.
As I turned down the stairs towards Curves, grinning and giggling, I thanked Hashem for putting me exactly where I needed to be at that moment.
It is so hard, in the moment, to always make sure to appreciate every stage that our children experience. I know, as I watch my insomniac-devilish two year old get into everything in the universe, that this stage will pass and I will actually miss it. I know, already, that my 13 year old doesn’t shower me with hugs and that my 11 year old can’t be bothered.
And yet, when Yakir asks for a cuddle moment and I’m in the middle of making dinner, I don’t always make the right choice. And when I run down the stairs to get dressed and return to find Yakir sitting on the kitchen counter eating the bag of pretzels that I purposefully hid from him, I don’t always remember to laugh.
I know that these are moments to cherish. I know that they will be gone in an instant, and I will be left running after the boys for that picture as they climb onto the bus and go off to the army.
The trick is to remember how quickly time passes and to try – to try so very hard – to enjoy the ride and the absolute chaos of toddlerhood now. Even in those moments when I can’t believe, yet again, what he’s just gotten into or done.
And that was the reminder that I was blessed to receive this morning.