I have been REALLY remiss in blogging lately...actually not just lately, but since way before I went to Italy...
It seems such a short while ago that I was planning this trip...looking for rentals, checking airfares, talking with my daughter about her taking care of the business while I was gone, talking with my son about meeting him in Toronto and flying to Florence with him...checking the Euro against the Canadian dollar and hyperventilating at the money lost in conversion...
It feels like only a few days ago that I was familiarizing myself with some poorly-pronounced Italian words, and hoping against hope that some kind and benevolent person in Italy would actually understand my disastrous attempts to speak their beautiful language.
That's the funny thing about time...when I'm on the before-side of something, it seems like it will never get here. Then, afterwards, on the behind-side of it, I wonder where the time went.
Time...a fleeting thing...I remember asking my grandmother a very thoughlessly worded question, when I was at the unthinking age of 24.
"What does it feel like to be old?" I asked.
She thought for a few moments and then looked me in the eye and said, "Well, it feels the same as when I was your age. That is, until I stop in front of a mirror and see this old woman looking back at me, and it always startles me...I wonder who she is, and then it dawns on me that it is me..."
I didn't get it, then, when she said that. I do now, and I wish with all my heart that there was a way to have a do-over here, to go back in time and ask my grandmother that question again, only with more kindness this time. Something like, " Would you mind telling me what it is like to be 82?" That might have been a more tactful way of asking, I think.
Time...measured by the ages of my children and my grandchildren. Not that long ago, my children were the ages of my grandchildren. It seems totally implausible to me that they are now 38 and 41. My babies, my little toddlers, my adolescents...where did that time go?
I was browsing through the big old trunk at the foot of my bed the other night, and found a stash of photos of my daughter and my son when they were 6 and 3. Within seconds I was reduced to sobs, kneeling on the floor beside the trunk and holding my hands over my face. It happens often, this wave of longing...I miss my kids when they were little. I miss holding them, rocking them, making birthday cakes for them, sewing countless outfits for them...I miss, most of all, the smell of their hair when they were falling asleep in my arms. It's not something I can do these days...hold them on my lap and rock them to sleep.
For a while I could have my "kid fix" by sitting and holding my grandchildren and rocking them...but even that time has passed. My youngest is 9 today, and he's too cool for a rocking with Mugga. He's way cool, and I feel blessed to get a prefunctory hug and on occasion, a kiss on the cheek. All of them are huggy-kinda kids, and they always grace my life with a hug and an "I love you, Grandma," every time I see them, so it's not like I'm totally lacking. Still, there's nothing like the feel and smell and sound of my kids when they were little, and I can't have a do-over on that, to my continuing sorrow.
So, the time that's passed since my last blog entry seems like a few days, and it's actually been over 2 months...I promise to be more diligent from now on, though...this is a good place for me to share my little stories of my life, with the hope that what matters to me will perhaps matter to you.
Time...a fleeting thing...you can't see it, you can't touch it, you can't smell or taste it, yet it is one of the most important gifts we have. Measuring it is only possible by man-made devices like clocks, calendars, watches, daytimers, sun-dials...and the only way I know to measure it after it has passed is by looking back over my memories and trying to capture my thoughts and feelings of that time that's passed.