stopping time

How to stop time; kiss.

How to travel in time: read.

How to escape time: music.

How to feel time. write;

How to release time; breathe.

- from How to Stop Time by Matt Haig

Today I took the girls to Michaels to buy a hot glue gun. And some plastic flowers and headbands and string for friendship bracelets. I am not a great teacher nor the most patient mother when it comes to showing my daughter how to do crafty things. I always wanted to be craftier than I am especially when I was in college in western Massachusetts and people were making their own clothes and then spinning around in them at concerts.

I did make friendship bracelets however, safety pins in pillows, colorful string everywhere, hair wet from swimming, while watching T.V. Speaking of which…did you hear the news? Beverly Hills 90210 is coming back on. Next Wednesday I believe. Am I excited? Maybe. Don’t judge.

I remember watching the original one in high school with my boyfriend, Ben. He was very tall and the only boy in the state of Arizona that wore Khakis. He would sit next to me on the couch, hands on his knees, as my mom sauntered in and out watering plants.

I am trying to distract myself right now as my son flies solo for the first time today. His flight is delayed and I am trying not to text him too much. His summers are far more adventurous than mine were as a child. He goes to camp in Maine while mine were centered around swimming, getting tan aka red, eating Otter Pops, and maybe if I was lucky, going to the mall.

The best was swimming at my bff’s club and ordering Cokes and fruity Mentos from the snack bar. I loved dropping the mentos in the icy Coke and then using a spoon to fish them out all cold and sweet. The highlight of my summer was going to New Jersey to visit family and friends which I still do with my kids and still find endless entertainment in watching fireflies flying low on the grass, going to the boardwalk and beach, and smelling that distinct salty air surrounding the Atlantic Ocean.

My daughter also went to camp this summer and for the first time. As we drove her there, pretty pops of color from crape myrtles to lilacs and cool, pristine lakes dotted the road side. She got more quiet as I got chattier. Then my son saw naked people in the woods which made us all laugh. As we got closer to the camp, my stomach turned as I prayed and hoped that this experience would turn out to be a good one for her.

Two weeks later, we picked her up. After watching her stand on the stage doing improv in her tie dye and numerous bracelets, she ran up to us with tears in her eyes. I smelled the top of her woodsy head as I hugged her and time stood still for a moment. She looked older, tanner, and taller.

She told us in the car after eating seafood for lunch that she stepped out of her comfort zone while trying water skiing for the first time. She wants to go back next summer. This has been the highlight of my summer - seeing her so happy and proud.

Now as I sit and wait and worry and eat and get up and sit back down and check my phone again for a text or a call, I think to myself, I really need to get up and go to the gym first thing tomorrow because if I don’t, I won’t go, and as another storm rumbles away in the distance, I tell myself that this is summer, stay soft, stay even, relax, and have a glass of wine. These words from Pema Chodron also come to mind,To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake, is to be continually thrown out of the nest.” And once thrown, the only thing left to do is surrender, trust, spread your wings, and fly.