The pitter-patter of rain breaks the gray silence as I look upon my bedroom mantle. This vignette is strategically placed so that my gaze falls upon it whenever I sit at my desk; a reminder. The words are simple but the follow-through is harder.
Last week one of the reading discussion questions had me think about one of my happiest moments in my life. Do you know yours?
After a mild winter our February came to an end in the midst of cold rain and wind. It was a perfect weekend to hunker down and enjoy the much needed rain our golden state needs. But no! This is the weekend where our schedule is full; with outdoor events. The hubs and I had debated whether to bring in the umbrella to our sons’ school as we cheered him on for an award, similar to Citizen of the Month. Each and every individual student is recognized for their strengths and, much to our surprise, our son was given his award for the trebuchet. This trebuchet is the same science catapult that bore the blood of the hubs’ deep cut from the saw blade; while assisting with the project.
The son happened to be dressed for the part, as scientist, since he was part of a quadruplet; the school population dressed similar for twin day. He and three others wore button down shirts and ties. The moms had been shocked that these four boys chose this to wear. He plopped on his Dad’s lap and smiled. I noted the hub’s surprise. He looked a bit teary. As we left the school in a downpour with squealing kids, windblown umbrellas and wet teachers, I wished for the umbrellas in my vehicle. We were drenched. It’s the little things that matter.
Later we were downtown amidst grumbling and crying. These three boys continued to instigate unrest and I glared at them across the table. We were given an opportunity from our dear friends who brought us to the community in which we live. This year we vowed we would make the efforts to see one another as our kids continue to outgrow us. My girlfriend and I had watched the pouring rain from the bustling coffee house, earlier. It had been years since we had seen her husband, though we live two miles away, due to all of our crazy schedules. So last evening our family of five headed, to him.
But we made a stop along the way; this breakfast establishment from 1924. It had been over twenty years since the hubs and I had graced its entrance and it was here that our three sons bickered at the dining table. I tried to recall memories of this place, besides the long lines and hype, and when the food appeared before me I was actually disappointed. Were my memories from back then tainted? After shushing our sons I looked across the table at the hubs; also grimacing at his food. It needed salt although the portions were huge. The prices were definitely more than we both remembered. Nostalgia over. Oh well. So much for quality family time.
This mood continued as we arrived at our destination. The boys fought over seats, drinks, leg space, arm space. When told they had to exchange seats they refused. I sipped the strawberry daquiri as we chatted with our dear friend. The lights began to dim and the game began. The game was a much needed distraction as I felt the alcohol permeate my mind.
I let the bad mood go and went with the flow.
The grumbling finally ceased as the youngest kept track of the fouls and the score. The eldest’s eyes scanned the Laker Girls while the middle son whooped at the three point shots. It was a close game with our northern rivals, the Kings, and at half-time the fans were pumped. The camera pans of the crowd were entertaining and the arena erupted when Ron Burgundy appeared on the screen (aka Will Ferrell). I pointed to the courtside seat where he was sitting. Our sons are fans of Anchorman, Elf, The Other Guys and most things Will Ferrell.
The eldest son stared, transfixed, as our dear friend played his Bach Stradivarius; his high notes hitting the ceiling. He was in awe. I jabbed the hubs as our son leaned across the glass; gazing down at the music sheets. When our friend offered his trumpet to our son; he froze. “Next time, bring your trumpet,” he told him. I waved at a fellow trumpeter, the husband of another girlfriend who lived two doors away from me, in college. The bickering and arguing moments fell away; making this moment worth it. I could see it in my son’s eyes. He was inspired.
In the last five minutes of the fourth period the crowd roared. I jabbed the hubs to stare at our middle son; yelling and cheering as another three point shot was made. This son, earlier, had balked at going out in the rain to watch his favorite sport of basketball. Our Lakers, having a tough season, won this game. We stayed through the end, hearing the brass play as the cacophany of notes bounced off the emptying arena. The camaraderie of the group, the affection and familiarity with the security and staff, was infectious. Randy Newman’s iconic song blared over the speakers as we left the purple haze with an all-time high.
It was the best night ever!
I soaked in the feeling; brief and rare moments of time given. I am thankful.