I had one of those days today where I looked up and realized that the whole day had slipped by and I had missed it. I was caught up in work stuff and house stuff and whatever my own stuff was that didn’t really matter all that much in the end, but what did matter was that I almost let a day go right on by me without doing anything to make it even remotely memorable. I told myself last week that THIS week was going to be different. THIS week, one of the last of summer vacation, was going to be exactly as I imagined it would be at the beginning of the summer. And as I fixed dinner and ate it quickly so I could get back to some very important busywork that shouldn’t really ever take precedence over having dinner with my kids, I realized that TODAY was this week. Today was the day that I was supposed to start making my summer daydreams come true. But I was still in my sweats and the kids were still in their pajamas because it’s just been one of those days, and I tell ya, I almost said “I’ll try again tomorrow.” And last week and too many weeks in the last couple months, I would have done exactly that and gone right back to work.
But today I didn’t do that. Today I told the kids to run up and get dressed as I tried to find some pants that weren’t 10 years old with holes in them. Today I grabbed their buckets and a blanket and went out without looking in the mirror or hesitating long enough to remind myself that I had too much to do to be heading out the door. Today someone stopped me to tell me that they saw pure joy on my son’s face when he ran in and out of the water. Today I let them see the sunset and get all the way into the lake and drive home soaked to the bone with music up and windows down. I let them stay up two hours passed bedtime and read them two stories and sang them two songs and brought them two glasses of water. And I kissed them two thousand times and we all agreed that today was a good day. That today we almost missed it, but we didn’t. That even if we don’t do it every day – today, we made a choice to put play first, to put each other first. And, man, was it worth it.