Under his breath, the man whispered: we're making history tonight.
And I always thought something else about that phrase. I thought, something has been done that was good enough to MAKE it into history. Worthy of being recorded somewhere and retold to generations. Making history was equal to making the cut. Making a goal.
But it echoes differently in my mind. The television show blurs in the background. My unfocused eyes watch hours-old memories while the noise of the world drifts into flatness.
There's a deer in the woods, Lauren, come see! She exaggerates her tiptoes with deep swoops of shoulders and bent knees. Her head peeps up over the edge of the window, and we watch. The doe is glossy brown and still in the slanted morning sun. The edge of the forest is peppered with shadows and light, making patterns where there should be none, hiding others in tips of bare light. Where, mama? I can't see it. But the deer dips her head to the ground, nipping at something tender. Oh! There! She lifts her front leg to poise one hoof in the air: a delicate prelude. Then she melts into the forest, hiding in shadows and light.
Her fist grips the wooden spoon much too high as she stirs. Brown sugar melts into butter, and she is immersed in her job. Completely focused. There is one bit of sugar that won't crumble: a hard bit of sugar that was perhaps too moist became a round pebble of surprising candy. Lauren pokes a finger into the mixture. Tests the resolve of the pebble. She looks sideways at me and sees my the encouragement of my lips, smiling because her desire is so clear. I nod: a conspirator against cleanliness and patience and a few other forgotten virtues. She digs the pebble free and pops it into her mouth. Her eyes widen as she savors the goodness of sugar melting into butter onto tongue.
Last one to the car is a rotten egg! We run across the parking lot, feet little and big stamping a rhythm into the night air. Giggles and screams punctuate our beats, and -- breathless -- we fall into the open car doors in heaps. Mama, YOU'RE THE ROTTEN EGG! But I tickle them to release my rotten-ness in a burst of teasing love. Oh, no! I shout, I better hurry and buckle in or I'll be a GIANT rotten egg! They scream and scoot, backing away in a haste of feigned, joyful terror.
Her finger traces a line of words, the words trace a line of thought, and she is reading. We snuggle in our pajamas on Mia's top bunk with a book propped between the two of us -- a bridge promising hearty tries and gentle encouragement. Mispronounced vowels bleed into the silences, but recognition comes a second later. Deep in my belly, there is a dizzy flutter of excitement. I wonder if she feels it, too? Does it travel up to my arms, pour out my fingertips, ripple across the pages of the book? Does it burrow under her fingernails, wiggle up to her shoulders, cascade into her heart? She is reading. A paragraph is as long as an entire chapter might be, but still: she is reading.
History is being made. And I intend to enjoy the making of it, simple as it may be.
We're seeing the Bigger Picture through simple moments -- moments that force us to stop and take notice of the ways our worlds are important, meaningful, and beautiful. Please join us at Undercover Mother today! Grab the button, link up, and read a few others to encourage them as they walk this journey of intentional living.