Monday, November 7, 2011

7000 days

I love a good book, and when a friend told me about me about this wonderful book she had been reading by Andy Savage I was all ears...that is, until she gave me the number.  7000 days.  That, she said, is how many days you get with your child at home until they go to college.

I don't know what else she said. I don't even remember the name of the book. All I know is that this is first time in my life that I have really stopped to consider just how finite this active stage of parenting really is.

I flashed back to when my daughter was a newborn, sleeping those days away between feedings.  The whirlwind days that zipped by on vacations that always seemed to short. Then to the long days that blended into sleepless nights and into the next groggy day like stretched taffy about snap when she was sick with ear infections or reflux or what some other kid gave her.  The days she spent with grandparents when I just had to get away, finding peace and sanity in airports and hotel rooms with "the girls" from college or my husband.  And now the days when we rise in the dark, leave home at 7:30, return by 3, and have a good five hours together as a family before we do it all over again, 5 days a week, most of the year.

It's the ordinary day as a mom that I revere the most.  When she was five years old, in our church pre-kindergarten, and off on Thursdays.  We would wake up lazily, linger over waffles, meander over to school by 9:30 on a school day, or wander upstairs to the playroom otherwise.  Playing games, goofing around, the dress-up clothes, the simple lunch at home.  No homework, no "best friend" drama, no report card.  Just tips to Target and doctor's appointments and life, and it has been a blessing.  Each day of it.

As I emerged from the fog of this trip down memory lane, my inner skeptic woke up.  7000 days?  Not possible. So I did the math myself.

If she goes to college by 19, that is 365 days a year times 19 years equaling 6935 days (wow).
Then I thought about it from our perspective here at Hands on Mom, focusing on the preschool years, and figured that, for kids who go to kindergarten by age 6, that's 2190 days (really wow).
A limited time to make an unmeasurable difference in the lives of our children, as only a parent can.

I leave you with this beautiful video on the wonder of an ordinary day.  It is 8 minutes long, it is an ad for a book (and this sharing was totally unsolicited), and if you have a beating heart in your body you will need a tissue.

We invite you to comment on your most memorable ordinary days as you take your own trip back in time.

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