Friday, May 3, 2013

Stop and smell the flowers

the Oxford magnolias
It's easy to take most things for granted but nature has the knack for reminding us that we must savor the moment. Nothing is more visible a reminder of this than the beloved row of magnolia trees running straight through the center of Oxford Street. Their blooms color our neighborhood and fill the air with their fragrant scent but only for a week...and then gone. 

So fleeting is time. As blossoms now begin to rain on the grass, I remind myself that there are so many opportunities in life we must take advantage of and savor while they are here. Spring is a time that reminds us all of that. 

Next weekend I'm going to visit Patrick in DC (where he's been doing Shear Madness at the Kennedy Center) and we'll drive to New Jersey to his brother's house where we'll celebrate Mothers Day with his mom, Sharon. Patrick's mother has Alzheimer's disease...a devastating condition I've become familiar with over these 19 months. She knows my name and I love that, but Patrick and I are both aware that there will be a time when she will not.

Before this, in all the years I'd been dating, I've never really taken a special place within someone's family. This is different. I've grown to love Patrick's family and his Mom is so special to me. Her joy when she talks to me on the phone or her hugs of elation in the few times we've been able to see each other in person are precious. That's why I'm thankful to have this gift of knowing her. I've gotten to share our mutual love of horses while we led two large mares into pasture in Wisconsin and both tittered with laughter as we watched Patrick struggle to coax a stubborn pony behind us. I've seen her love of her children as she has playfully joked with them. Her sense of humor is still visible. I see a lot of who she is and shades of who she was. Those moments mean everything, but as Patrick and his family know those times are changing.

When you love someone...or someone comes into your life appreciate them. Give them your time because that's a lesson that can be the most difficult to learn the hard way. 
Stop to smell the flowers today.

1 comment:

Karen said...

Thank you, Leah for your lovely words. It's not often that someone you've only known a short while can so hugely impact your world. Call it perspective, given your history. I tend to think you've always been so kind, loving and generous.

What you shared about my mom is so true! I love those times when I can still see the "old" mom; the quick wit, the silliness, the fierce protector. As those moments fade, I'm challenged to feel grateful. Grateful that she can still experience joy, laughter, and love. Grateful that I had the good fortune to wind up as Sharon's daughter. Grateful that she met you, as you are truly unforgettable. Yes, it can really change perspective, can't it?