predicting the future

Good morning. Good very early morning. It’s 5 something o’clock, and I am writing to you now because it is officially summer vacation for my kiddos. Which means realistically this is best chance I have for quiet work. It will be hours before Cole’s teenage body rises, but Eleanor will be downstairs shortly.

And before she gets here, I need time.

Time to write to you, of course. And time to remember her the right way. Because there are three competing images I have in my head of her from the weekend.

  • One: the look on her face Saturday night when I discovered {at 11 p.m.} that she’d been reading in her room for the past four hours after I’d tucked her in.
  • Two: the image of her sticking her tongue out at me when I announced it was time to for us to take her bestie home.
  • Three: the picture of delight as she ran and leapt with wild abandon through the sprinkler yesterday afternoon.

I’m picking option #3.


Why am I thinking about this at 5 something in the morning? Because if I leave it up to chance, there’s 2 out of 3 shot that the memory I’m holding when she first greets me isn’t going to be great. {welllllll, you might be thinking, 2/3 of her choices over the weekend weren’t so fabulous}. And you’d be right. But I also know that she did a great job putting on her sunscreen after only being asked once. And her dishes were done without being asked at all. And she spontaneously said I love you to her brother. Although she also spontaneously used a not-so-great tone with him a bunch as well.

All of this to say, there are thousands of moments we can remember from every day. The one we pick predicts the future.

If she comes downstairs blurry-eyed, overly warm in her winter cow pajamas {you didn’t think she’d give them up due to a little hot weather, did you?} and I remember the book or the tongue sticking out, my eyes will pinch, my mouth will flatten. My body language will say: don’t bother me. My eyes and attention will quickly revert to the screen and I’ll tell her I’m in the middle of work and can help her in a few minutes.

But if I remember her joy in the sprinkler? Then when I see her my mouth will automatically lift in a smile, my eyes will reflect my delight. I’ll put the laptop down to give her a hug, then snuggle her next to me while I finish my work.

The choice is mine. And the choice carries consequences. Because right in that moment, I set our direction for the day.

Does this mean she’s going to be an angel until sunset? Of course not. But it means I’m going to start the day seeing angels instead of demons. And how I see her affects how she sees herself, and that changes her choices. It isn’t a perfect system. It doesn’t guarantee 100% success. But it does weigh the dice in my favor, so I’ll take it.

As for the other memories? We dealt with those issues at the time. {the flashlight is now hiding under my bed, and the conversation about tongues happened right there with her friend.} There’s no need to linger.

What about your weekend? What happened? And which happening are you going to remember? I’d love to know. Hit reply and tell me about it.

speaking of happenings…. Summer of Love happens in two weeks! But it isn’t automatic {no one wants a flood of uninvited emails}, so please please hop right over here and enter your email in the little box next to the red button. Hit submit, and you’re all set! Or, if you’d rather, send a reply, and say ‘me, me, summer of love me’ and I’ll get you all signed up! Want details before you decide? check it out.

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