THE EPISODE:  My 2-year-old son and I were getting ready to leave my Mother’s house for the day.  I hurriedly packed the car with the heaps of things and bags we usually travel with.  FINALLY everything was packed in.  I ran back into the house to get the most valuable package.  Amado, my son, came down the porch steps with his chocolate milk in hand.  It was a chilly day but calm and I was ready to go, hoping not to drive in the dark.  “Let’s GO, Amado!”  I said like a loving but impatient mother.

“No, Mama.  Sit,” he said calmly.  I stood still.  Sit?  Trusting him felt right at that moment.

Amado sat on the porch steps and watched the sky while he sipped his chocolate milk.  He insisted I sit next to him.  He started pointing things out: The colors in the sky.   The sun was setting.  The moon was up high shining in the daylight.  There was a hang glider right above us.  A cloudless sky, you could see the jet streams to the left and to the right.  The helicoptor humming.  Birds flew overhead.  We sat and watched.

Swishing Chocolate Milk, Watching the Sky

I wanted to know more about how Amado saw the world at that moment, so I asked if he’d like to take a picture.  How could he resist?  I grabbed the camera from the car, deleted photos to make room, and he started clicking away.  He caught the sunset, the moon, the hang glider.  Daylight was gone and Amado continued to take photos of bushes, flowers, and as he approached it, the rusty carriage of the car and the muffler.  He clicked away until there was again no more space on the camera.

Sunset Moon by Amado

THE LESSON:  A toddler reminded me to “stop and smell the roses”.  One of my joys in this world is watching the sun set and my beautiful boy had to revive this memory for me.  But it isn’t about ME anymore, is it?  Now, as a parent, sunset gazing is not only MY joy, but a growing joy for my son.  I am lucky enough to have seen MANY amazing sunsets in my life, but HE is JUST BEGINNING to appreciate the world’s beauty.  As our childrens’ guide, we as parents are here to enrich their lives and to sit with them through those moments where nothing seems to be happening but a beautiful scene. 

As I watched the colors fade and the darkness envelop the man gliding in the sky, I watched my son quietly observe the vastness of the world and the moon’s impression taking over the night.  Sunsets are only bound to get better and better even though they are just the same.