18 April 2016

Drumming, Hair Cuts, and the Park

In case you have not experienced it, life moves quickly. It's April and that means we have about 6 weeks of school left! It also means that here in Ohio, the weather is trying to warm up. (Yes, trying is the key word. We had snow two weekends ago, and last weekend the temperature was in the 70's. It's all typical Ohio spring weather). With the warm weather, we start looking at "summer haircuts" and taking inventory of what summer clothes still fit or are still able to be worn. But most importantly, warmer weather brings on warm activities, such as playgrounds and drumming in the park.

I have spent a great deal of time reflecting lately. Maybe it's the change in seasons. Maybe it's my way of keeping from getting overwhelmed. I know a lot of it is the pain and emptiness I still feel now that my mom is no longer with us on this Earthly plane. A lot of it, however, is probably just the fact that I am older and as we mature, we realize life is fleeting and each minute should be appreciated and lived. I have my kids to thank for reminding me about how important life is. Here's a glimpse into some of the lessons I have learned lately about living life...and living it completely.

It's Just a Haircut

We have always allowed our kids a lot of flexibility on their hair cuts and hair colors. Grow it out? Fine, but remember the tangles might hurt. Cut it short? Perfect, just please, remember to wash it once in awhile. Purple for Spirit Day? Sweet. Can we help you find the coloring that will come out easily, won't destroy your hair, and doesn't stain your clothes, your scalp, or the bathroom? The rest....it's all you! Enjoy it! It's only hair. It will grow back, even when you cut your own bangs because they are getting in your eyes. Thanks for reminding me that sweating the small stuff is a good way to add more stress to my hectic life. When I forget to take time to breathe, I love your words of wisdom: "Papi. It's just a haircut!!"

Can We Go to the Park?

After a long day at work, coming home to just chillax sounds perfect. I just want to turn my mind off and veg. I don't care that I haven't eaten dinner. I don't care the dishes need done or the laundry isn't put away yet. I just want an hour of nothing...no phone calls, no electronics, no discussions, no dickering, no planning, no arguing, nothing...... and in all of your child-like innocence, you ask snuggle up to me and ask, "Can we go to the park?" As I look into your face, I can see that you also don't care about phone calls, or electronics, or planning, or discussions. You see the sun shining and just naturally know your body needs to run, play, yell, and absorb the sunshine and air. Graciously, enough, you have invited me to partake of this opportunity with you. When I raise my eyebrow, you suggest we grab some cheese and apples, and some water, and we can have a picnic at the park. I know this is your way of trying to head off my objections of "we need to eat," but it is the turning point. I smile and you know it's a done deal! You grab cheese, apples, and a banana (for the road, of course) and put it all in a lunch bag. You help fill two water bottles. We head out the door for a short evening in the part. When I forget to take care of my body and soul, you are my best medicine. Thanks for letting me go to the park!

Drumming? AWESOME!

If you haven't spent a lot of time in our neck of the woods, you probably don't realize that we are a cutting edge city with a hippy undercurrent. ComFest (along with various other community festivals) are hugely celebrated and loved. Once the weather warms, and summer begins to tease, we all decide to shake out of our winter slumber. What better way to welcome in the spring and the summer than with a big ole Drum Circle in the middle of the park? Personally, I first heard about drumming exactly 10 years ago. It was not a part of my usual daily, weekly, monthly, or even yearly routine before moving to Central Ohio. A lot can change in 10 years, however. In 10 years, one learns that belly dancing is a beautiful expression of art, accompanied by amazing drummers. In 10 years, one can see a shy child on a stage showing off the beginnings of his musical expressions when his music class (which is of course a drumming class, because doesn't everyone have drumming as a music class) has their spring concert. In 10 years, one learns that a drumming circle can be impromptu and scheduled, or it can just be a random out burst of energy around a late night camp fire, because the crowd I run with now carries drums like most people might carry their car keys! When I mention there is going to be a drum circle at the park, you shout "Really? Drumming? AWESOME!" Quickly, you follow up with "Can we go?" I laugh because I knew how much it would excite you and had already planned my evening around it. When I forget how wonderful it can be to step out of my comfort zone and just enjoy life, thanks for your enthusiasm. Drumming? How totally exciting!

My little bundle of energy, thank you for reminding me to live life simply....and completely.