Teach me to number my days And count every moment before it slips away Taking all the colors before they fade to gray I don't want to miss even just a second more of this
It happens in a blink It happens in a flash It happens in the time it took to look back I try to hold on tight, but there's no stopping time What is it I've done with my life It happens in a blink
When it's all said and done No one remembers how far we have run The only thing that matters is how we have loved I don't want to miss even just a second more of this
It happens in a blink it happens in a flash it happens in the time it took to look back I try to hold on tight but there's no stopping time What is it I've done with my life It happens in a blink
We arrived home from a fun weekend with family to the terrible news of the death of another family member. Jeremy’s Uncle Doug had died suddenly and unexpectedly from a heart attack Monday evening. We are all still in shock and deeply sad for the loss suffered by his wife and son and daughter in law. They are a small, close family. They had been out to dinner, the four of them just the night before. And that evening, he and his wife were picking up Gram to go to dinner at Mom and Dad’s.
In a recent discussion with my mostly-estranged sister, she expressed her anger towards me that I think that the blood of family means that you work harder at those relationships. It has been the source of huge frustration for me that my own family has this deep division. I have tried. Heck, I got a degree in psychology that was mostly based on this frustration. But our most recent discussion was so disappointing to me because I had such hope in the beginning that things might change for the better now. Unfortunately I seem to be infinitely naive.
I know that DNA-based relationships are not the be-all and end-all in life and there are certainly times when they aren’t even possible (adoption) or may be harmful and in those cases people find or get a new family that takes the place. But for the most part, family is something worth fighting for.
Jeremy and I chose to live in the Chicago area in order to be close to family. His family had a greater concentration here and my family is far-flung and tends to move frequently so this made sense to us, to raise our kids with the most family possible. And we see family fairly frequently. Even my family. Especially this month with it being my brother’s wedding! But I do get to feeling that we should be spending more time with family than we do right now. When Hannah was a baby and we had no classes or after-school activities, we went in to visit family or they came out here pretty frequently. But time moves on and people get busy and more children are added to the picture and activities pile up.
With the loss of my Grandma only a few weeks ago so quickly followed by Uncle Doug’s passing, I have become keenly aware of the truth in the lyrics above. That these things happen in a blink. So how can I make the most of every day with my family? I felt pretty guilty when I knelt by my Grandma’s bedside and introduced her to almost two-year-old Evelyn only a day before Grandma passed away. How had we not made it down there in all that time? I want to commit to carving out more time for family. I’ll start right now by looking at the calendar and figuring out when travel is possible and when hosting here is easier and open up communication with all the family involved. I want to establish family times as a number one priority for us.
Because a few weeks ago Uncle Doug was sitting on my back porch goofing around with the kids at Eli and Dad and Gram’s birthday party and I treasure that memory. I want to be sure that the kids grow up with lives filled with memories like Uncle Doug cheering them on when they take bites out of the Gingerbread house on Christmas Eve.
Christmas Eve will not be the same here this year. We will miss Uncle Doug’s laughter. But we will keep on gathering family and making more memories as we number our days.
Slow down, slow down
Before today becomes our yesterday
Slow down, slow down
Before you turn around and it's too late
It happens in a blink
it happens in a flash
it happens in the time it took to look back
I try to hold on tight but there's no stopping time