I sometimes get caught up in the day to day stuff that has to get done and forget to look at the big picture. I doubt I'm the only one. When things are busy, it's easy to see only the long days and longer to-do lists and not recognize the gradual changing of the seasons or the passage of time. Then something happens and it's a bit like a big ol' slap in the face.
That something this week was Spencer getting his braces off.
That seems kind of small in the grand scheme of things. They were a pain. Now they are gone and he's happy. It would be pretty easy to move on and not stop to recognize the significance of the end of braces. Because that is the end of a phase. An ENTIRE phase of his life. And it is significant. He'll never again be a tweener with braces. He's pretty much full-fledged teen boy now.
I was contemplating this yesterday and then up popped this article in my facebook feed - Saying Goodbye To My Boy
The details of this article aren't all the same for me. For one, I've never ever been confused as someone who is 5'9" tall. But the general theme is very much top of mind for me right now.
I think watching these changes is pure magic. I think it's even cooler that I actually like the people we are building. They are competent, intelligent, compassionate boys. They aren't perfect and I know they aren't "complete" just yet. I know there are more lessons to learn (in both directions) and I know that these moments will be easy to miss in the minutia of real life. But at the end of the day, I'm very very pleased with the progress Bob and I have made in creating some pretty spectacular PEOPLE.
So today, I'm celebrating the completion of another phase for Spencer and opening my eyes to see the special in the everyday stuff we are all going through. Soon enough, all the little "annoyances" will once again change and I'll be left with new challenges to keep up with while I try to acknowledge the swift passage of time.
This week - go hug your kids or your pets. Raise your glance (when it's safe of course) from the traffic on your commute up to the sky. Remember that this phase (good or bad) will pass and there are more adventures around the corner.
See the magic - and be thankful for it!
(And don't ask me why Spence insisted on having the balloon the orthodontist gave him tied around his neck for his "After" picture. He is, after all, still a goofy 13 year old!)