As a teenager I was the girl that always fit in better with my parent’s friends than my own peers. Yes I had a group of friends and we spent many hours talking about teachers and homework, the trials of being in love, and all the other stuff teenagers talk about. But when I really flourished, when I felt most me, was when I was with my mom and her friends talking about their latest room remodel. Or sitting with my dad discussing compost and his herb garden. Well into adulthood, I found comfort in the belief that when I was older my peers would be more like me.
The thing is I’m now in my mid thirties and I find I still spend a great deal of time looking forward. This is especially true as the mom of a baby and young toddler. All day long I think of what’s next: How will the kids be when I pick them up from daycare? As soon as the kids are in bed I can… (fill in the blank). What should I do with Amelia this weekend? I can’t wait until Haiden is old enough to play with Amelia. I wonder what the kids should be for Halloween? These thoughts are so continuous they often resemble white noise in my mind.
It’s actually shocking to realize how much time I spend deliberating the future.
I think about this frequently as I interact with my children; like when Amelia watches The Wiggles on DVD. Every time it ends she asks to watch it again. Usually I tell her no, she has to wait until the next day. What she doesn’t know is that I want to say yes. She’s at an age of constant motion so the half hour we spend snuggled on the couch is invaluable to me. I almost always find myself wishing for tomorrow when we can snuggle again.
Should I try to spend more time in the moment? Probably. But I think the ability to look forward and anticipate tomorrow is important, even vital. At the lowest points of my life the ability to see beyond today has given me hope and reassurance, encouraging me to push onward. And sometimes, longing for tomorrow can be a sign that what I have now is pretty darn good.