Tag Archive | Changes

“Speed of Time”

backyard chain grass park

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

As I was pulling weeds in front of our house the other day, I was hoping the new neighbor didn’t think I was some type of Mrs. Kravitz from the Bewitched show.  Something made me look up just as a young lady with dark straight hair drove by.  She pulled into the driveway next door and went straight into the garage.  That was the last I saw of the new neighbor, for now.  Shortly after, a moving truck slowly inched by, almost turning into our place but then realized it needed to move down one more spot.  Mrs. Kravitz might have stayed just where she was, pulling weeds, or she may have moved inside her own house to spy at the goings on through a partially moved blind or shade.

I decided to go around to the other side of the house to see what weeds needed pulling. Slowly, I managed to get to the back of our yard and decided to hang out there to read a book in my new anti-gravity chair while listening to the little kids playing a few doors down.  The birds were singing their usual songs on one of the most gorgeous of summer days.

Suddenly, a young man carrying a big wooden spool was in the new neighbor’s backyard, and he walked along measuring a cable line from the back of the house to the phone line. At first I wondered if he was going to be our new neighbor too, but realized that since he had a cable, he was the cable guy.  Shortly after, the moving truck left, and it made my Mrs. Kravitz self think the new neighbor must not have any children because the unloading would have lasted a lot longer.  Mrs. Kravitz would have most likely taken the time to run right over and knock on the new neighbor’s door, but we might just have to wait to see if the young lady ventures out.  We’ll start with a few waves as she passes by in her car and go from there!

I couldn’t help but think to way back when we first moved into our house.  The new neighbor’s house had been occupied for many years by Bruce and Ann.  When we met them, I thought they were an “older” couple and wondered if they planned on downsizing, since their family was all grown up and moved out.  Ann must have read my mind because some of the first words out of her mouth were, “We’re not going anywhere,” which ended up being fine with us.  Bruce and Ann had been very nice neighbors to have for 20 years, and the neighborhood felt empty after they moved out.

Now, the new neighbor might think we are an “older” couple and may wonder if we plan on moving away to a smaller place. She might even be so young that she doesn’t even know about Mrs. Kravitz!  We used to be the young family with little kids running around, but now we watch and enjoy the sounds of the new little ones taking over.  Bruce and Ann came to the high school graduation parties we had for our kids.  In her cards, Ann was so kind to write about how they enjoyed watching our kids grow up.  Now we’re the ones watching the neighborhood kids grow up.  Isn’t it funny how that happened, and so quickly?

Some day man will travel at the speed of light,
of small interest to those of us still trying to
catch up to the speed of time.
~Robert Brault

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Shook Myself Back to Reality

“Can you please make a new place card for me?” my daughter, Laura, texted me. She explained how I needed to change her last name to her new married name.

“I didn’t even think of that,” I said.

“Neither did I!” said my daughter. My future son-in-law was the one who thought of that important detail!  Old habits are hard to break, I thought.

The day before, the three of us sat at the kitchen table. I had printed off place cards of the names of all the guests who would be attending the wedding. The weekend before that, we figured out where people would sit. The table number was on each card too. My future son-in-law held the spreadsheet in his hand, read off the names and table numbers while Laura stamped the back with that person’s food choice.  The choices were represented by a cow, pig, chicken, carrot or fish.

When I first created the spreadsheet, I made eight columns. The names were first, with a column for each person’s response of yes or no, and if they were going to attend, what their food choice was. Of course I put Laura’s name on the sheet the way her name was at the time, and that’s how I made up her place card. I think I might have made a mental note about changing her name later, but with all the commotion, I forgot.

When wedding plans started unfolding, I wondered if Laura would keep her last name. She informed us that she was going to take her husband’s last name, and we all supported her decision. I told her the story about how my dad wanted me to keep my last name as my middle name, but since we gave Laura my previous middle name, I didn’t mind if she kept it.

Before my husband and I got married, my dad had a little heart-to-heart talk with me.

“You should keep your last name as your middle name,” he said one day, out of the blue. I must have had a blank stare on my face. “Then people will know where you came from.”

I agreed right away. I didn’t question his reasoning because I thought it was a great idea. I didn’t really like the thought of losing my beautiful middle name of Elizabeth that is nine letters long, but I knew I couldn’t fit all those names on my driver’s license, and I doubted all that would fit on a check. Checks are only so big.

When Laura reminded me that she was going to have a new last name, it was five days before the wedding. I had started counting the days when it was no longer possible to count the months. As the day got closer, the amount of time we spent finishing up small details got busier. Being busy like that helped me realize we were working towards a goal, and finishing things up made me feel happier about how everything was moving along. As the day got closer, the less busy I was, and I started to think. When I got that text about how I needed to change the place card, it made what was really happening all sink in a little more, and I realized why Dad wanted to me to keep my last name. He wanted to hold onto that little part of me that was my name and who told the world who I was.  I was his daughter.

Up until that time, I thought of the wedding day as being the day I would gain a wonderful son-in-law. For the first time, five days before the wedding, was the day I worried I was losing my daughter, and it was all just because I had to change her name on the place card.

After about three minutes of worrying, I shook myself back to reality. Deep inside a mom knows “that nothing in this world can sever the bond between mother and daughter.” (From Mother of the Bride Article.) After I read that article, I wondered if I should have been freaking out more about how I’m aging and turning into an “elder.” The subject matter in the article is true. I am getting older, but aren’t we all? We’re all moving into new phases of our lives. The best thing to do is go along for the ride and look forward to what will come our way.  The ride keeps going no matter what, so it’s best to enjoy it.

Besides, anyone who is going to have a son-in-law who helps with stamping place cards, is one lucky lady!  Even though Laura will change her last name, she will always know where she came from!

If nothing ever changed, there’d be no butterflies. ~Author Unknown