I lifted my eyes from the hot soapy water of the kitchen sink and gazed out the window across the yard to see my husband striding alongside the barn, pitchfork in hand. Our 2-year-old daughter Kadyn struggled to keep up a few steps behind him, her short legs mimicking his longer steps.
Justin, 6, raced up to them on a bike that was too small, legs peddling fast and knees almost banging the handlebars. When he got near he didn’t bother to stop the bike; just leapt off letting it fall while he ran to catch up to his dad. Jordon, also 6, scrambled down the swing-set ladder where he had been decorating the wooden platform with colorful sidewalk chalk. He ran to join the gang—all headed for the hayloft of the barn, one of my favorite places as a kid.
And suddenly it hit me—when did I become the mother instead of the child? Wasn’t I just the child trying to keep step with my Dad? Wasn’t I just the child racing on my bike and playing on the swing-set? Wasn’t I just the child headed for adventure in the hayloft of the barn? But now here I am standing at the kitchen sink in the same house where I grew up—and I am suddenly the mother! The generations seem to have shifted in an instant. I imagine my own mother standing at this same kitchen sink looking out this same kitchen window watching me play as a child. Did she know that in a moment my childhood would be gone? Did she know how fast those days would go?
I start to panic about the passing of time as I look up to see my kids waving at me from the hayloft door. Seeing their faces lit up with excitement and adventure makes me laugh out loud and I frantically wave back. In this moment of nostalgia I know I can’t slow the hands of time, so I vow to do the best I can with the time we do have. I am happy to know my children will grow up in the same wonderful place I did. I relish the comfort of this place—a home where generations can change in an instant, but the wonder and magic of a childhood on the farm will always remain.