Friday, June 13, 2008

A Kodak Thought to go with the Kodak Moment

I used to think the little graduation ceremonies they had for Kindergartners were a ridiculous waste of time and energy. Gimme a break! They are 5 or 6 and moving from one grade to another grade just like their brothers and sisters in the older grades. Why do they need a special graduation ceremony for that? What was the line from The Incredibles - "We keep finding new ways to celebrate mediocrity?" Not sure if that's the exact quote, but you get what I'm sayin' right? Truthfully, that's how I used to feel about all of these stupid little celebrations for kids that kind of had no clue why they were even celebrating.

Then it happened...I became a mom. And suddenly all of the meaningless things my kids do have great meaning and value and importance to me. And it took me until now, just this minute, as I am writing this, to figure out why. Yeah, there's the first obvious reason: they are MY kids! And as my kids, they are the best looking, most well-behaved, intelligent kids in the universe and so everything they do is fantastic! (Unless it's bad, then they are their father's children.)

But hit me like a brick tonight. The 2nd (apparently obvious to everyone but me) reason all of their little accomplishments and talents and skills and actions become so important and noteworthy to me is because we only get to experience those accomplishments once! Then they move on to other feats of amazing complexity and these moments are gone. We can't go back and celebrate them later, if we let the experience pass without acknowledgement, it will be lost forever. And personally, I can't bear the thought of not taking every opportunity to create and record and remember every tiny moment of their lives that I can.

This is coming from the world's worst record keeper. I am probably one of the least organized people I know. I mean, just look at this table! So when it comes to scrapbooking and keeping track of all of the event dates and stuff, I'm severely lacking. My poor Little Man has very few pictures of when he was a baby, because I was so busy just trying to keep him from crying all of the time. Big Brother has a lot more baby pictures because he was my first. He was such a quiet, gentle, happy baby that I spent all day just watching him and taking pictures. I try not to feel bad that I wasn't more aware of my not recording Little Man's infancy. Aside from the memories, photos would have been useful when he becomes a teenager - to remind him of what a hard time he gave me as a baby! I can't go back and recapture those.

So I try to make up for it now by being a better camera mom. I am remembering to enjoy the seemingly endless little events that help my kids celebrate the small accomplishments in their lives. I smile and I clap and I proudly puff out my chest (well, not really, it just does that cause I have big ones) and tell people how funny my Little Man is and what a computer genius Big Brother is becoming. And we (all the parents at the nice little event) talk about what a great day we just had celebrating the Pine Wood Derby 4th place Ribbon and the Kinder Graduation.

I'm sure I'm slow and the rest of you have already figured this out. I just thank the Lord that I finally realized how important these stupid little celebrations are. These seemingly inisignificant, occasionally irritating, sometimes inconvenient events give me a reason to live in the present and they remind me that I need to record the present for the future, so we all have memories of the past when we need them later on.


Queen of Chaos said...

Hi Geri! This is Autumn. :) I got your link from Rachel.

I know exatly what you mean! When I became a mom- all of a sudden the little things matter more. {Unless it's summer time and I've had my share of children for the day! hehe}

Kristi said...

Hi there. I saw your comment on Autumns' website and decided to follow it. I laughed out loud at your profile talking about going "All chuck Norris on them". What a hoot. Thought I would leave a comment. I am fairly new to the bloggin thing too. It's nice to have a way to document some thoughts, since I am NOT good at that AT all. Still have all my wedding photos in a box (14 years ago). I remember thinking the same way you did, until I attended my son's preschool graduation. Preschool for cryin out loud! I was up in the front row with camera, video camera...yadda yadda. I knew that I had become a "true" mother when I was excited about this event. Motherhood changes you that is for sure.

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