The Hourglass



The moments go by. I marvel at friends’ hair loss, my dad’s newfound tendency to go to bed before 9, my cracking knee.
I view this time through sepia, colors gray and darken, edges disappear, focus fuzzes. We were all just kids waiting for Santa Claus, and not that long ago. Time hastens us, the blurring begins, the years gain momentum and take off down the track. We were all just kids, all just kids.


Sometimes I wish I could more clearly see the aging, the growing up, the losses and gains of years passing. What was the day the paunch began to grow around my middle? When did my daughter start to speak in complete sentences? There should be an exact moment in time, a line marking the change so we know what to expect. Today I am young! Tomorrow I will not be. Age’s gradual approach bedevils me. It’s sneaky. Predatory.


I resolve to think differently. Hold the spider. Let it crawl up my arm. Look it in its eye. It eats the flies, it eats the flies. See its purpose and certain beauty. Let the spider crawl. It moves to the baseboard and does what it does. I shake the gloomy sediment from my cobwebbed vision and look skyward. Accept the blessing.


Because we are gifted with years, bodies that carry us through, eyes sharp with wisdom,
and friends and family that grow old with us, when so many don’t, so many don’t.




I woke up this morning to two little girls wrapped around my neck. I cup my hands around feet drawn up nearly to chins. My fingers can’t contain their toes anymore. Paint dots their noses, dried something — peas from dinner? — crusts in smile lines. I think I yelled at them last night for making a mess of the peas. They nestle the tops of their heads under my chin. Two months ago, they were waiting for Santa Claus.


I will remember this. Vow to relish the pea crust, delight in paint left on the dining room table. Stop yelling.


We were all just kids, we were all just kids.


The moments go by.


17 Responses to “The Hourglass”

  1. Sondra says:

    You are such a gifted writer. Thank you sharing your gift with me.

  2. ilinap says:

    Thanks for this reminder. It’s all too fast, and I yell way too much.

  3. I love this post! Beautifully written. It’s funny, I have just very recently realized that for me, THESE are the good times. My children are growing up (but not too fast) my parents are aging, yet still independent and healthy. My husband and I are taking in every moment to treasure what we have, while we have it.

    I realize that life is a delicately balanced scale that could tip at any time. It’s okay. That’s just the way things are. But what a gift to REALIZE you are in the best of times when you are in them. So for now, I am stopping to smell the roses, and the tulips, and the magnolias…I may take a little extra time when I get to the poppies…I hear those are a lot of fun

  4. […] today I read something that helped me put my crap into perspective. Because it is my crap. Of course. I’m the one […]

  5. So lovely!

    I’ve reached a stage lately where I feel like I ache about the speed in which my boys are growing and how they’re changing. I miss who they were, and love that part of them, but I love this stage, too. It’s just getting my mind adjusted to how quickly it seems to be happening! Guess it goes hand in hand with how quickly it’s happening to me, too!

  6. Rima says:

    So very true. I try to stop and take it in whenever I remember to. I’m also hoping one day having written some of it down on the blog will help too. Beautiful post, Deb.

    P.S. Did you have to import those fall leaves in from another state? I mean, do you guys have fall in California?

  7. Good job putting life back in perspective. I swear you must have written this specifically for me today. Beautiful…

  8. […] put me back in perspective with my lil’ attitude problem. Her blog just reconfirmed that I needed to chill. So I took a deep breath and I did. Why? Because I am a baby and need to grow up and because God […]

  9. Ferd says:

    At age 55, with my 4 kids ranging in age from 25 to 30, I would say that the best years for me were when the kids were small. When there was crazy action every day. Fun and games, problems and mini tragedies, the energy of youth and the fatigue of being a parent, so many new experiences. Fun times. And they do so quickly pass. The moments, all sorts of moments, blend and fuse and zip on by.
    Today, though, I am old enough to appreciate every single moment. I relish life like I never have before. I try to take nothing for granted. Life is short and I can feel the truth of that in my bones. There is very little worth complaining about. I have good health and I am using it for good and not for evil. I have the very best life partner I could ever dream of in Princess Gail, and together we try to enjoy whatever it is that the day brings. We look for the awesome but can find joy in the ordinary. Isn’t that great!? I’m blessed, too!

  10. Ferd says:

    BTW, your daughters are growing up!
    They are beautiful!

  11. My birthday is today and this post reflects my thoughts as I woke up today with my 3 year old daughter nestled close to me, smiling in her sleep. I vowed the same things, to cherish the moment. Thank you for this piece. Very organic, sweet, and true.

  12. Botut says:

    Funny, I stumbled across this blog and your words were exactly what has been on my heart. I just posted something about my grandfather’s passing…and life.

    Nicely done. I look forward to more!

  13. MomZombie says:

    I ache sometimes when I realize how swiftly I’m being carried on the current.
    Isn’t it funny how something like pea crust can be so profound?

  14. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by San Diego Momma, Morgan B.. Morgan B. said: A post that made me hug my chicks a little tighter tonight via the lovely and talented @SanDiegoMomma […]

  15. Jack says:

    Don’t know what else to say other than you get it, you just get it.

  16. tinsenpup says:

    Your babies are so beautiful! Thanks for reminding me that life’s too short and childhood is too fleeting to be wasting time with raised voices and harsh words. I really need that reminder sometimes.

  17. Sigh. This is so beautiful. Thank you. I too was thinking about the time slipping away from me as my daughter becomes more independent every day, her babyhood gone.
    We won’t speak of my knees, crows feet or waist line. Ahem.

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