Last week Claire had (at least in her 1st-grade mind) a big performance at the assembly at school. She was SO excited for me to be there and watch her be-bop to some rap music with her class.
We got her all spiffed up and ready to go.It was crazy-hair day at school so we got Grace all "spiffed up" too.
The big kids left, then the girls rushed out the door on their bikes after we got lunches made, cleaned up breakfast, made beds, you know, the whole morning rigmarole. I raced to get Lucy ready, myself showered after my workout, respond to two quick texts about Young Women, blah blah blah. Lu and I clamored for a parking spot at 9:05 and raced into the school by 9:07 (as fast as you can race with Lu, which is actually not fast at all), just as everyone was clapping their hearts out for the outstanding 1st grade performance.
My heart dropped. I know there will be many seemingly more "important" things I will miss in life than a quick first grade performance, but how I long to "be there" for these kids in life! It was important to her so it was important to me too and I was sick to my stomach for missing it.
This is how Claire's face looked when I found her in the crowd:
...Until she saw me...
That smile showed me I was forgiven and all was well in the world.
I guess sometimes just being there, whether or not you actually see the performance, makes a difference. I think of all the things coming up in life. The sports, the performances, the games, the dates...all those important things we may not really be able to stretch ourselves quite far enough to cover. Sometimes we'll only be able to be there in our thoughts, or in a silent prayer we send "there." Sometimes it's only our words written a note that reach where we wish we could be. But I hope my children will always know that my heart is right there with them, even if my body is not.
I love the quote that says "Making the decision to have a child--it's momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body." --Elizabeth Stone
Five carbon copies of my heart are out there tucked safely next to the hearts of my children. I am "there" even though I'm really right here.
Love that sweet Claire. She knows I'm trying my best.