Thursday, September 17, 2009

I need a pause button

It's happening again. It's been happening steadily and perceptibly every year of my life, so I don't know why I'm wasting time remarking on it, except that doing so is getting me to sit down and write. Obviously, I've not been making myself do that much lately, and it's certainly not for lack of material.

Anyway, the phenomenon about which I am circling is the acceleration of time. Back in the pre-Internet Dark Ages when I studied physics in college, I'm pretty sure I remember reading that if you are traveling at relativistic speeds (like, much faster than the rate at which I have to travel in order to catch a rapidly crawling rugrat before she reaches the stairs) that time as we know it slows down. So does it follow that if I'm moving at an absolutely anti-relativistic slog, that time speeds up? Because that is what it feels like.

Things are a little better since school started again. It was tougher than I expected having the extra week of summer this year, due to Northern Virginia's stubborn insistence that school can't start before Labor Day even when that means waiting almost a third of the way through September. Having kids who are a little older is both a blessing and a curse; they are both more capable of entertaining themselves, and more likely to come complain about being bored when stuck inside on a rainy day and we've already been to the library. We had a number of excursions this summer, and a nice weeklong visit from Nana, but by September I think we were all thoroughly tired of being in the same house. Having looked forward to having half my houseful gainfully employed for most of the day, I still had to stop and count their ages on my fingers to be sure I could really have two kids getting on a school bus, and a third going to preschool.

In the last few weeks, it seems like the temporal wormhole effect has just hit even more frequently than usual, with one kid or another saying or doing something that I was sure they were years too young for. Bookworm made dinner pretty much by herself twice in the last ten days. (OK, so it was mac and cheese both times. She still did it herself.) Buzz picked up tying her shoes in one sitting (she was properly motivated by a new pair of tennis shoes I'd picked up at a yard sale...she took one look and said, "Are those Sketchers?" Up until she asked, I hadn't had any idea what brand they were. I asked how she knew, and she said some of her friends had some. A guardian angel definitely guided me to that yard sale...six, going on sixteen...). Aslan is learning the gentle art of snappy comebacks; she was demonstrating for Bookworm her new trick of pulling her lower eyelids down to show red, to which her properly horrified sister responded, "That's a dangerous thing to do." Aslan replied with a cheery, "But it's a fun thing to do." And Spot came to help me sort through a box of old shoes to make sure that everyone has something to wear for the fall...I put a pair on her to play around in, and she proceeded to crawl over to the ones she wanted and brought them to me. I never thought the whole shoe fetish concept was really a genetically programmed girl thing, because I don't remember ever having it that bad, but all my girls seem to have it in spades. Maybe my memory is going too.

And to top it all off, a few short weeks ago my husband and I celebrated ten years of marriage. When you consider that we have shared six moves, ten job changes (between us), and the production of four remarkable children, it's almost hard to believe that it's been only ten years...but it's also still a little hard to wrap my head around. Still, at least I can look back and reflect with satisfaction that I was not, after all, insane to get engaged to this dashing fella I'd been dating a whopping seven weeks at the time he popped the question. Ten years later, my family are still the best decisions I've made. I wish I'd generally done better at keeping journals and getting pictures into albums, to say nothing of keeping up this blog, but I've stored up many years' worth of hugs, laughs, good books shared, wisecracks traded, and quiet reflective moments. A pause button for my life would not improve these moments--it would just mean I might actually get the laundry done.

1 comment:

  1. Time only seems to speed by when I take time to look back and everything seems as thought it has fast forwarded through the least memorable parts.