About a month or so ago, Mama called me and said, "I just left Costco and they have a full skeleton that I want you to buy for LMC."
You might be wondering why Mama wanted me to buy a complete skeleton for LMC. I already knew. Because she is the smartest grandmother in town. She wanted me to buy the skeleton because she wanted me to teach LMC the rest of the bones. Cool, right?
The ones she already knows are a great parlor trick and we have a lot of fun with them- but to actually gain some knowledge, rather than to just impress second cousins and strangers on the metro would be pretty cool, too.
LMC and I dropped what we were doing and headed off to Virginia to visit our Costco.
They did, however, have rain boots and a matching umbrella. And really, what does a three year really want to do on a rainy day? So, we picked up the rain boots with the money Mama had placed in my account. We called and thanked her for the Pokie-Dot-ted boots and umbrella.
Usually, when it rains outside it is one heck of a storm shaking the windows and pelting the ground. Too much for a three year old to venture outside with her purchases. So, she sits at the window- crisscross applesauce (the new version of Indian style) with her rain boots on her feet and umbrella above her head. Today was a little different. The rain started the way it always does, but it slowly started to wind down. Once it got an acceptable level of drizzle for this Mama, I rounded up the little girl wearing her boots and holding her umbrella and told her we were heading out.
She leapt at the chance and tore down the hall, to the elevator, and out the door to see the magic that is rain.
"Mommy! Come out in the rain! Come join! I have dee magic umbrella! Come!"
No. It's wet out there. -- from the safety of my cover.
"Mommy! Look! Look at the water! WOW!"
Pretty neat, right?
She found a few small puddles and did her best to make big splashes in them. She spun her umbrella and ran back and forth along the path.
She screamed. A lot. With her outside scream.
"Mommy? I scream with my big, big, BIG voice?"
Sure, sweet potato. Scream to your hearts content.
Those screams of glee quickly melted into pelts of laughter.
She explored holes, nooks, crannies, and continued to run. The rain kept coming. Someone opened a window to enjoy the first hint of fall with the cool breeze. As the breeze went in, a little Allman Bros. poured out and it made me think of home, or maybe just of Athens and youth.
There are those moments in life when you decide that you want to live it to the fullest- usually in college, surrounded by comrades with a few on the table and a few waiting to be had.
About two years ago, I had a friend quit his Atlanta CPA job in order to travel to India or Greece or Honduras or someplace where he could bike naked and grow a beard. God Bless him. He's in Telluride right now after spending over two years hopping around; skiing in the winter and I have no idea in the summer. Cool kid. Smart as can be- and for him, he's doing it to the fullest.
For a moment, part of me was jealous. Not the biking naked part- rather the drop it and go. Just for a moment. I looked around and saw both my husband and my daughter and wanted to be nowhere other than where I was at that moment.
Another hit a quarter life crisis about six months after her marriage. She dropped it all, got on an airplane and flew to Thailand with a backpack and an iPhone. She teaches three year olds now. To her fullest.
But for me? It has evolved. It is not about the travel, the sites, to see and taste and try and be and be remembered. It's this little girl. It's the Husband I sleep next to. Living life to the fullest was taking her outside to experience the rain. And find puddles.
Until she had to, well....