Sunday, August 15, 2010

MM: One Is The Loneliest Number

Our house is surrounded by emptiness.  No. Really.  I'm not being dramatic... we are now surrounded by empty houses.  Our wonderful neighbors, Sam and Wes, moved the last of their things out yesterday.  And I believe I mentioned before that the house to the other side has been vacant for, like, forever.   

Our neighborhood has always been quiet, and dark, when compared to the home I grew up in.  But, now, well, now the silence and darkness is eerie.... disconcerting.  Wes always liked to listen to his games at deafening volumes, and Sam would often fall asleep downstairs with the lights on.  I miss the faint glow from their backyard and the sound of sports announcers wafting in through our open windows.  I miss the smell of fresh-cut grass mingling with my morning cup of coffee.  I miss the clang of a ladder opening before the sun has fully risen.  And I miss the sound of Sam's voice wafting across the front yard as she greets us on her way in from work.  

I'm really not a morning person (I believe I've mentioned before how that phrase is a serious understatement).  So, the sound of gas-powered machinery at 6am is really not something I could ever have imagined missing.  And yet... there it is.  The absence of something familiar.  And I miss it.  

baby kyla sleepsI've noticed it more as I've gotten older.  How I miss things that I once disliked or took for granted.  The first time this feeling hit me hard, Punkin was 9 months old and had just weened herself.  She woke up one morning and decided to stop torturing the both of us, and she never nursed again.  At first, I was happy.  Elated really.  We had suffered through it and she was healthier for it, but it was such a struggle and so painful for me that I was happy not to do it.  And then it was night.  And I woke up.  I walked in to her room.  I picked her up and I sat in the chair with her, just the two of us.  Then I laid her back down and went to bed, happy at the prospect of getting more than 2 consecutive hours of sleep.  But those two hours passed, and I woke up and I walked to her room.  I picked her up and sat in the chair with her.  And I cried.  Because I missed it.  I realized that I would never again hold a sleepy, snugly, sweet Baby Punkin in the dark and quiet.  Night-nursing is so peaceful, and I was never going to have that experience with her again.  

So, I miss things I never liked in the first place once they're gone.  Weird.  But, I'm nothing if not weird!  I started wondering, though, what things in my life (happening still) would I miss if they were suddenly gone?  Would I even be able to guess?   

Things I Hate But Am Pretty Sure I Would Miss :
1)  The Wake-Mommy-Up-By-Sticking-My-Finger-In-Her-Nose technique
2)  The way Papa sighs Every. Single. Time. he moves in his sleep
3)  The audio from Toy Story reverberating throughout the living room
4)  Little girls screaming in frustration (or joy)
5)  Shoes.  Shoes that are placed side by side (exactly), but never in the shoe bin. 
6)  Asking Papa about something and getting an answer that starts 30 years in the past

I guess it all boils down to people.  The people we love and the things they do.  But more than that, its the quirky little ways that they do the things they do.  And a choice.  The choice we have to remember in each moment, that those things they do are part of who they are.... and who they are is what we love. 

What (or who) do you think you would miss?


Jim M. said...

My Dad always said "you won't miss it 'til it's gone." When I first heard that - 35 years ago - I wasn't sure what he meant.

I do now. I miss things way too much.

mamarolf said...

I think I've decided that the first trick is recognizing what you might miss and enjoying it now... The second trick, is being able to appreciate how wonderful it was and still be able to let it go.

To quote my Mimi, "life will go on: whether you want it to or not," and it would be a shame to miss out on what's wonderful right now because you're so busy missing what was wonderful 'back then.'


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