Driving to work this morning, there is the sense that this ritual, daily-year after year, will be with me, for how long, I don't even know. I've had so many of them; rituals. Always with the sense that they would last forever; often with a surprise when I find one ritual dissipating and being replaced by a new one.
Early, it was broken into 3 really. There was the school week, weekend and summer. School was, as I remember, being one of the youngest in a house of 8 people, chaotic. Busy, bustling. Walking to and from school with various degrees of velocity, and, of course, never driven! Wake up, eat cereal, school, homework, dinner, TV, rinse and repeat. Then there was the Saturday morning cartoons that lasted until we were way too old to be watching Scooby Doo. Summer, pure freedom. The ritual of no ritual. Trips to Rozees Market, the high school pool carrying our little fm radio and the locker key hooked to our bathing suits. Bike rides, skate boarding, unauthorized hiking trips, hanging out with people you know would not be approved of. Feeling risky, untethered and indestructible.
Later, life as a young married. Working, moving here and there, unpredictable cars, big life decisions. But the rituals; work, fight, socialize, fight, paying bills, fight. The ritual of the fight.
Babies come and life gains rituals you didn't even realize existed, becoming so much more important when raising kids. They provide continuity and discipline. There have been times that the weight of the rituals seemed like a smothering pillow, not soft and comforting, but heavy and stealing my air. For a few years, there was the two to three hours a day that consisted of transporting or waiting for kids at various schools; not to mention the extracurricular activities. All while trying to get work done, house clean and meals made.
Now I miss those days; at least parts of them. I wish I had lived in the moment more, cherishing them, aware that the time is fleeting and worthy of enjoyment. I don't mean creating memorable moments; I just mean embracing everyday life.
Living in the moment is something I learned later in life though. Learning gratitude did that for me. Made me realize that all I really have is right this very minute.
Enjoy your day, it's gorgeous out.