Wednesday, October 24, 2012

To Race and Rest



Everything is a race to him.

He's four years old, so he's non-stop motion and lives to be the first to cross whatever finish line can be invented.  I've grown accustomed to his little arm instinctively thrown to the side as we walk down flights of stairs, blocking whoever would dare to take them faster.  To giving in and sprinting down city sidewalks, because I love to hear those belly laughs.  I've run more in the past few months just playing with him than I have in all the years since my high school track and field days.

Today the weather time-traveled back to summer and we threw open the windows to drink it in before it's gone.  It was a piano lesson day for my girl, and while she sat happily at the bench with her teacher, my little racer and I went for a walk.

"Let's do three things, Mommy!  Only three."

"Sure.  Which three?"

"Let's do some looking at leaves, and some running around, and let's lay down in the grass."

Okay, then.

The leaves were everywhere, raining red and orange and crunching yellow under our feet.  Every so often, he'd point out a finish line at a tree or bench, count down the start, and we'd take off.

Laughing and out of breath, we came to a grassy spot and sprawled out side by side.  His feet rested on my propped-up knees and his head rested in the crook of my arm, fingers (as always) twirling through that mop of blond hair.  A lazy breeze picked up a leaf or two, everything else as still as the brilliantly blue sky. In the middle of a harried day, the only soundtrack to this moment was the low hum of a distant lawnmower.  The "pause" button ... where is it?

A little head popped up then, his face inches from mine.

"Mommy?"

"Yes, Noah?"

"Let's get up and race again"

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