As far as I know there’s no national holiday, no major event, no red-letter notation under today’s date.
But it matters.
It matters because life is made up more of ordinary days, ordinary moments and mundane choices than things that take weeks to plan.
I’ve had four years to consider what really matters when there’s no opportunity to make more memories.
These are the things I find most precious…
Laughter at the dinner table: One more inside joke, one more funny story from the day, one more unexpected burp or missing your mouth with a fork or cup-happy noise filling the room and echoing off the walls.
Random acts of kindness in my own home: I remember one day Dominic was working on his Trans Am under a shed in the yard. A storm blew up and rain was slanting in on top of him and his parts. Julian and I remembered an old tarp shed side lying around, ran and got it and had it up before Dominic was barely wet. I pass that shed every day and think about how we all just jumped in and made things work. Over and over and over. A legacy of compassion and love that warms my heart.
Phone calls and texts and messages about absolutely nothing: “Just checking in, Mom.” “I finished that paper.” “It’s supposed to rain today, need help out there?” The stuff of daily life, the grace oil that greases the wheels of human interaction. I can hear Dom’s deep voice booming in my head when I read them.
Goofy habits and pet peeves: Each one of my kids came down the steps in a distinctive fashion. I didn’t have to look up to know who was joining me in the living room each morning. Dominic was always marking rhythm by tapping his hand or snapping his fingers. Julian lumbered down because morning is not his friend. James Michael practically ran down (which actually resulted in a broken wrist once when he slipped!) and Fiona called out a cheery, “Morning, Mom!” when she neared the bottom. If I listen hard in the dark hours of early morning, I can almost hear each one once again.
Few of these things are caught on film-they only exist in my mama’s heart because when I was living them, they hardly seemed worth the effort to record them.
But these-THESE-are the “videos” I play as I drift off to sleep.
I’m thankful I wasn’t so absorbed in virtual reality that I missed storing them in my heart.
Everyday moments are the real keepers.
You might not get a second chance.