Over the last couple of weeks, since the weather has been more forgiving, I have been going on short walks with my son while my wife gets ready for work. After breakfast has been eaten and plates cleaned we leash up the dog, grab the stroller and make our way over to the nearby park.
These walks are often only 10 to 15 minutes long, just enough time for my wife to shower and begin putting on her makeup. It’s a leisurely pace and we make many stops. Sometimes to ride the swings, other times to look at something that has caught our eyes, and other times I have to clean up after the dog.
These short explorations into our neighborhood are the moments I enjoy with William. It’s the small things like him noticing a jet flying over towards O’Hare airport, a bird tugging at a worm in the dirt, or a squirrel scrambling up a tree as we approach I enjoy with him.
I love watching him study new things he’s seeing for the first time, or looking at something he saw the day before, but looking at it in a different perspective. I love listening to him jabber as the breeze blows the leaves and hollering at the dog. I love when he looks up at me with a grin as if telling me he’s having a great time out here with me in the park.
Those small moments of recognition and interaction are what I look forward to every morning. Those times we spend, just the two of us, (and the dog) are the moments I cherish. Those are the occasions that stick with me when I think back over the past year he’s been part of my life. Those are the memories I look forward to making with my son over the many years we have together and those are the memories I hope he cherishes as well.