I am watching the clock on my company-issued laptop. Work is slow today and I can’t help but think I am wasting time. In my mind, when the sun is shining and I’m not out in it, I’m wasting time. When I can’t mark something off of my to-do list, I am wasting time. I have a million things to do at home. There are piles of clean laundry on my bed waiting to be distributed to their appropriate homes; similarly there are clean dishes in the dishwasher and half-read magazines scattered on furniture. I’m starting to feel like I have a problem with completing things, but I can’t beat myself up for letting living get in the way of cleaning. There is also a healthy queue of client editorial work waiting for my attention. I have been working on one book for three years, another copy job has taken 2 months too many and I just got a new contract.
Right now, though, all I can think about is cartwheels. I don’t know when I learned how to do a cartwheel; I don’t even know who taught me. It is a life skill however, that I believe every little girl should have and Nia does not yet know how to do it. I feel personally responsible for passing on this knowledge, and today is the day. I can not wait to show her how her old mom can flip about in fields of sweet smelling spring grass. The scene rolls in my head again and again as the minutes slink by. I can’t wait.
Somehow, teaching her cartwheels does not feel like wasting time; and everything else can wait. When I became pregnant with Nia, I felt like my life was over. I didn’t think I could dream anymore. My life as I knew it then was over, but a new life as a guardian had begun. I am proud to report that I have become a better dreamer. I dream for us. I am also an example of dreams come true. This is my job as a mother.
These days, minutes, seconds and hours create the very film of her childhood memory. It is my job to make it good. Watching her face light up with surprise when I agree to her game of twister or hearing her lead vocals when we are singing our lungs out together to the newest pop song or seeing her legs spin against the perfect blue sky, then land on that first cartwheel is a better high than anything anyone can give me.