The Passage of Time
It seems appropriate on this day in which we celebrate the passing of an old year into that of a new year, to reflect on the passage of time. Time is a funny thing. Time can be our friend or our enemy. Time can fly by so fast we can scarcely breathe or it can drag it’s feet like that of an unwilling child.
I have a little brother. We are thirteen years apart in age; a lifetime, it seems. I remember the day he came home from the hospital and how impossibly small he seemed. I remember how we sat around staring at his tiny toes and how we held him as much as we could. I was just beginning my teenage years when he was just beginning life.
My little brother was five when I graduated from Highschool. He graduated from preschool that same week. I attended his graduation and I remember thinking how funny and cute he was in his miniature cap and gown. Then I left home to begin my own journey, my own life.
My little brother was seven when I got married. I celebrated my twelve year anniversary in November. I’ve been married and having children for the majority of my brother’s life. He knows me as his older sister, but I’m more of an aunt in many ways. Thirteen years is a long time between siblings.
Yesterday, my little brother came to my home and hung out with me and my children. My children love their uncle and have been climbing on him since they were big enough. We chatted, and they all played Guitar Hero. My oldest son is closer in age to my little brother than I am. They are nine years apart.
As we chatted, I told my little brother some of my favorite memories of when he was little. He doesn’t remember them. They are just stories to him. But to me, they make us a little closer as siblings. I recounted to him how, when he was two or three years old, I taught him that cows say neigh and horses say moo. I told him how I taught him to sit cross-legged on the floor, hands resting on his knees, and saying ‘Om’ over and over so that we could “meditate”. I told him about his preschool graduation.
My oldest son is ten years older than his baby sister. That sounds like a lot to me. As I reflect on my little brother, I try to imagine what it will be like for my son and his baby sister. Will they be close, even though time has spread them apart? I suppose only time will tell. When he turns sixteen, she will turn six. When he graduates from Highschool, she will be eight. His memories of her childhood will be completely different than her memories of him. He will always be older, bigger, stronger. Just as I remember my little brother as a small, wiggly little infant, my son will remember his baby sister learning to crawl.
And time passes.
The New Year is nearly upon us. I’m not a big believer in New Year’s Resolutions. I always feel the need to buck the system and make my resolutions in June. But this year, the passage of time seems to be more real, more insistent. I seem to be getting older at an alarming rate. My children are growing up too fast. My little brother is no longer the toddler of my memories, but this very tall, strapping man.
My hope for this New Year, or resolution if you insist, is that I savor more moments, cherish more memories. Instead of wishing time away, I hope that I can enjoy the time that’s here. Before I know it, I will be the Grandma, watching my own children be parents. I’m not ready for that. May 2010 be more of an unwilling child than 2009 was. I’m ok with a little feet dragging for now.