“Daddy Daddy, you’re home you’re home, Yay!” squeals Ella. Wesley points excitedly and coos as he races towards me at surprising speed. Their pure, unharnessed excitement brings instant joy on even the worst of days. Moments like these bring a magic to life that nothing else can. The way they say “I love you” without saying the actual words. I know, welcome home stories are over done to the point of cliché. And this particular welcome home was nothing extraordinary. I simply felt compelled to write about it, if for nothing more than to read again when I’m 60.
Going back to work was extremely difficult for me after Ella was born. Having Wesley 2 years later did not improve this disposition. Sure it gets easier over time, and a somewhat enjoyable job definitely helps. But the bottom line is, being away from my kids for 8+ hours just plain sucks. Seeing the joy and excitement on my children’s faces when I come home is like a giant reset button for my day. No matter how hard work was or how late I had to stay, that welcome home magic wipes it clean.
Today the gravity of this moment was particularly powerful for me, as was the painful realization that these moments are numbered and fleeting. Sadly, they will be gone in a flash. One day I will blink and my children will be all grown up. Whether it be a simple welcome home, the wonder and joy of babywearing, or some other treasured moment; the clock is ticking down. In light of this, I have made myself a challenge, and invite you to join me. Spend some extra time cherishing and holding on to these magical moments. Don't let them slip away unnoticed as our busy lives fly by. Write them down in a journal or blog, some place to look at when they're gone and the kids are grown. And if you find that life has brought one of your special moments to an end; remember, new joys and wonders will come, you just have to keep your eyes open.