The smell of rain-kissed earth fills my senses as I sit in my living room, typing out this post. It’s a gentle reminder of how life is beautiful, even in the smallest of ways.
Our home’s balcony overlooks the road, the same road that Gy walks down every single day to board her school bus. It’s a bit patchy in places and has more dust than I’d feel comfortable about, but none of this fazes her. She strolls down this path, a friend by her side, occasionally throwing back her head in a hearty laugh at something the other child said. …
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It’s 8.30 p.m. on a school night.
Gy has finished her dinner,brushed her teeth and headed off to her room. An hour earlier she’d prepped everything for school the next morning- her uniform was all laid out and her bags were packed, pencils sharpened to their point.
Wiping the kitchen counter down, I pause for a second and cock my ear to listen for the sound of the light switch being turned off. Not hearing the click, I head quietly to her room and look in. There she is, seated on the bed, her blankets next to her in disarray and her back propped against a pillow as she reads her book borrowed from the library: J.K. Rowling- the wizard behind Harry Potter.
Standing there, I debate between telling her to go to sleep and finishing my chores and then make my decision. Heading to my room, I pick up my copy of Thrive and head back to her room. Nudging her on the shoulder, I ask her to scoot over and with a delighted and surprised expression, she complies. Deftly, she places a pillow for my back and then snuggles up to me, her back resting on my shoulder and we both sit and read in silence for the next 15 minutes.
As the smell of little girl and love wafts over my senses I sigh and rest my head on hers and comment, ‘I like this. We should do this often.’
‘I agree’, she nods and goes back to her book.
Watching the curve of her cheek, I see how she has grown up- from a tiny, chubby bundle to this confident, smart kid who has her wits about her, almost all the time. Choking back a sigh, my lips instead say, ‘I am going to miss you so much when you are all grown up.’
Turning and hugging me, she replies with, ‘That’s many many many years away, Amma. Let’s not worry about the future. This is the present. Let’s enjoy these moments. We will think about the future when it becomes the present.’
Yet again, I’m struck by how we appear to switch roles almost seamlessly- she comforting me, while I plod on through life wondering if my actions are the right ones, if I’ll ever be the mother she deserves.
As her head droops a little from the exhaustion of a long day, I close my book and hers too, gently settling her on the pillows, tucking the blanket under her to make sure she’s warm.
And it warms my heart immensely to affirm that these moments- the quiet, unobtrusive, simple, heartwarming ones- these are the moments that really matter.