Just the other day -- a dozen summers ago, maybe -- I was riding in a BMW with my girlfriends. We were seventeen and lovely, and the car belonged to one of our mothers. It was low, sleek, black. Mysterious. We had the music up as loud as it could go, and we were dancing with our arms in the rushing-past air. The wind loved us. The world loved us; we were utterly convinced of this certainty.
We slid up to an intersection where, beside us, a clunky minivan waited for a green light. Noise and laughter and spontaneity feathered from our open windows to tickle the undercarriage of the other vehicle. Its driver turned in our direction -- a young mother. Her hair was pulled back in a scrunchy, her eyes were tired, and her windows were shut tight. She looked at us in our borrowed car, scanning our bright, shining eyes and our care-free singing.
At the time, I fancied jealousy on her face. In the squaring of her shoulders. In the resoluteness of her turned head. I fancied us to be envied.
I mean, can you imagine?! A ritzy car full of beautiful young girls, compared to a heavy minivan carrying only a housewife and her sticky brood?
The light switched from red to green, and we raced away from the boredom of standing still. On our way to who knows where.
On our way to college.
And as I'm stopped at a red light with my sticky brood, I look out my window, and I see the ghost of a BMW full of over-made-up girls. Little kids wishing for maturity in a car they didn't work towards or pay for. Tube tops and hoop earrings and pop music tickle my undercarriage, but I swat it away.
That was some fun we had.
But it isn't jealousy in my tired eyes and the squaring of my shoulders. It's sense and comfort and love.
I love those girls. All of them.
The ones falling out of their halter-tops and the ones with eyeliner too black around innocent eyes. I love the girls who think a boring mom is something to be sped away from at the blink of a green light. I love them and their glistening arms, waving to the beat of the garish song on the radio.
I love them.
I was them.
Now, I pull away from intersections slowly. Careful of my cargo.
Happy with my 'plight.'
I think we'll turn on some teeny-bopping music and have a dance party tonight. Later, I'll be smothered with preschooler-kisses and first-grader stories. I'll rock my baby to sleep and breathe in his baby-scented cheeks. Then, I'll huddle under my husband's outstretched arm, and we'll talk for hours.
Every Thursday, we come together to share the harvest of intentional living by capturing a glimpse of the Bigger Picture through a simple moment. Join the Bigger Picture Community at Hyacynth's place today! Reflect upon something simple — or simply magical — that’s resonated with you this week, then share it with us!