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My Horrible Tendency

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bathroom looking in black and whiteI have this horrible tendency. I’m always looking forward. I know, at first, that might sound like one of those pump-you-up ideas you hear from motivational speakers but mine isn’t like that. Mine is our fourth day at the beach and already I’m bummed because the week is half over and now I’m closer to leaving than arriving. Mine is losing my temper with my three-year-old at 10 AM and counting down the hours until I get the fresh start of a new day. Mine is a gnawing impatience that wants to be better in everything, better in running, better in photography, better in writing. Better, better, better. Mine is this lie that now isn’t enough. That this moment, this present isn’t as important as the next one coming.

My favorite type of day is the one where every moment feels Instagram-worthy instead of dust and fur balls, every meal French toast and fresh berries instead of PB & J. And the scariest thing is that I’m starting to see this tendency in my daughter. Saturday, she and Matt went to the movies on a date to see Monsters University. All week she talked about the movie, what she was going to wear and the popcorn she couldn’t wait to eat. And Saturday morning, several hours before they even left the house to go, she said, “But I don’t want the movie to be over.” She wasn’t even in the moment, and yet she was already sad about it being over.

I just finished up my photography class, Auto to Manual, at The Define School. It was an incredible opportunity for a myriad of reasons, but I finished up the class most grateful for the way photography is teaching me to capture the present. To live in and be a part of this moment. To see the beauty in the ordinary. Yes, dreaming is great and essential, no doubt. But so is right now. And if I’m dreading the end of the weekend or counting down the days until a tough patch of parenting is over then I’m missing out. Because this moment, right here, right now, has a purpose.

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