I looked at my boys in the darkened theater this morning with tears in my eyes. Their faces were glowing, eyes shining, mouths open in joyful amazement. We had taken them to see Sesame Street Live, which for my Elmo-loving youngest one, was the ultimate in any concert (aside from Alvin and the Chipmunks, which is another infatuation...but I digress.) As the theater darkened and Big Bird, Cookie Monster, and Elmo took the stage, I felt the giddiness and excitement of every preschool-aged child in the room. The performers started singing and dancing and I became three years old again, with my beloved childhood characters in front of my eyes. To feel that connection between the child I was and who my children are now was pure magic.
I felt silly and a bit embarrassed showing that emotion then. A few years ago, I felt weak crying about anything beyond complete tragedy, and only that was to be done in complete private. However, as I have become more comfortable and accepting with expressing my emotions, I now understand how intense connection with your children and the child within you evoke feelings of joy, excitement, happiness, pride, and love. Those intense emotions can be expressed a variety of ways, including becoming a bit verklempt.
I asked my husband when we returned home if he felt similar to how I had felt that morning or at any other times during our boys' lives. He agreed that he was a moved by watching our youngest one's wonderment that morning. He also reminded me of our oldest son's first soccer practice. My heart swelled just remembering how little he was out on the field at age three in tiny shin guards, cleats, and the headband of mine he wanted to wear.
Our children grow up so quickly. We can never have another 'first' and moments keep moving, whether we take the time to notice or not. It is through these glimpses of wonder that our tears of delight mark the moment as magical. They acknowledge the emotions and memories of our childhood, while celebrating the joy of making memories with our children. To this, I say, keep a tissue and/or sunglasses handy and cry on.