Tuesday, March 12, 2019

The Sands of Time

Have you ever felt that the sands of time flow incredibly fast?
It certainly seems like it to me as I peer into the faces of my grandchildren
and see two little girls giggling together on a swing set mere moments ago,
only to realize they are now the grown up mothers of these precious young things.
 I hear and feel the redolent echo's of their long ago laughter 
embodied in these fresh, youthful souls. 
What went on in daily slow motion now feels
 as though it all happened too quickly somehow.
The hand of time stretched out, the hourglass was flipped,
 and suddenly...
 I was no longer the mommy in charge of wiping away tears,
chasing butterflies in the sunshine, reading bedtime stories,
saying prayers and giving goodnight kisses, as I tucked 
blankets up to those sweet sleepy faces each night.
While I was living and breathing those days;
the days of raising my own two girls, I had no idea
of the passage of time or the day to day progress being made.
We were just simply living life.
 The good, the bad, the messy and the in betweenness of it all.
 The ordinary and the extraordinary.
As a mother I just kept on keeping on, like we do.
Time kept on moving like it does too and before I knew it,
after what felt like no time at all, those little rosebud daughters had 
blossomed into the most beautiful full grown flowers I had ever seen.
I hear the word, "Mommy, Mommy...Mom".
I turn to look and there before me stands a little girl, a teenager, a woman.
Where did the time go so suddenly?
Ahh... but it's still here, right here with me.
I see it and feel it and sometimes even smell it.
It's in my mind's eye on a quiet day,
 as I stand at the sink looking out
 across a backyard that once held a swing set...
It's in the glow of three faces that look to me now calling out, "Grammy"!
My heart is still captured, carrying me backwards, by snatches of fairy stories,
 remnants of songs, and the fresh smell of laundry hanging to dry,
as I stand there again with two laughing girls chasing each other in and out of 
the sheets as they hang on the line in the warm summer sunshine. 
And the true joy of it all is that it never really ends.
It just becomes redefined and continually refined as those
lovely jewels we raise up come into their own, find their way
in this world, spread those glorious wings and fly...!
Layer upon layer upon layer, our relationships with them and to them change.
It is a bond that needs perpetual nurturing for an entire lifetime of blooming.
This love we share with our adult children is multi-faceted.
It grows and develops in a whole new dimension.
Although we are not needed in the same childlike ways we once were
for them, we are still needed in their lives and in their hearts.
They often enjoy our company and sometimes seek our advice.
Thankfully, they have reached that time of valuing our opinion, finally.
 And our need for them has experienced a metamorphosis of its very own.
We have been relieved of the primary care and responsibility for them
and yet we still need, on some level, to be needed by them. 
Or maybe it's more that we need for them to know that 
we are always here if and when they have need for us. 
I love the way mothering has grown me as a person.
How it has changed me and continues to do so.
I know so many different things about the world around me, 
other people and myself than I ever did all those years ago,
all because of this one vital, life-giving role in my life.
I love knowing that my daughters are on this same journey.
They are each taking their individual paths in their own ways.
Just as it did for me and my mother before me,
one day the hourglass will suddenly be flipped over and
 the sands will slowly start to release a new beginning
 into the wonder of their lives,
 as they step into truths that can be known only
 by the living and never by the being told.
 They too will be captured in moments when sights,
 sounds or smells transport them back to the childhood 
sweetness of their own offspring and maybe even further back
to the days when they were the ones laughing, swinging, chasing
and knowing nothing but the beauty of this moment.
I hope they will find me there, waiting in a continual circle of love.
 For memories are not bound by the flow of sand
 and love will always be stronger than time.
"Of Roses and Bunnies"

Of roses and bunnies
And sweet childhood days,
When time was our friend
And life was just play.

We skipped in the sunshine 
And splashed through the rain,
As we chased in a land
Where time knew no end.

There were teacups and cartwheels
And butterflies and bugs;
Laughter and bike rides
And tears that brought hugs.

Oh how I'd love to go back 
If just for one day,
To that sweet land of roses,
Bunnies and childhood play.

~ Danette Bartelmay


  1. Another beautiful post Danette. I have always felt the pain of my boys getting older. I really love the way they have grown into wonderful men, but still I miss when they were young. I see it in Little Buddy, his face changing, his body getting longer, I wish I could pop him into being a baby again just for a few minutes.

    1. Oh Meredith... I know exactly what you mean. Even I see the changes taking place too rapidly in your beautiful Little Buddy. Now I am watching it all happen again in my grandchildren. My beautiful Gabriella, this granddaughter of mine who is about to turn 12 that I am now looking up to! Thankfully my sweet grandsons are just approaching 5 so there is still some time...

  2. what a gorgeous post, so reflective of the joys of raising a family! nd what a beautiful poem.

    1. Oh Julie, thank you so much sweet friend! You are in those glory days right now and I know you are enjoying every drop. They go by so fast.


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