When I was little, I used to love staring at the stars. My parents live in a somewhat secluded area, separated from their neighbors by a large yard, and the sky around there is an open wonderland. The big dipper, constellations, peppered specks like paint; I used to study it in the way of an artistic masterpiece. It was magic.
I can’t say when it happened, but the stars, somehow, stopped shining as bright.
My boys share a small room with their bunkbed placed against a single large window. They like to keep the shade open a notch at night, to see outside. Buzz has recently taken to noticing the stars and the moon before bed.
“Come on, Mommy”, he urges, “I see a star.”
With barely a glance back, I reply, “I see it, too.”
“I see the moon”, he continues.
Sure enough, he does. But do I? It’s been a long day, I don’t have time for this, I think in tired exasperation, and begin an attempt to hush him to sleep. Meanwhile, he’s still reaching and fascinated at the brazen points of twinkling night, brightly flaring up the sky in his confiding brown eyes.
I remember that awe, I remember that wonder, it hasn’t been that long ago. When did I start being so dismissive in the face of innocent admiration? I’ve been so consumed with just getting by, but it takes only a minute to look up.
I need to take a lesson from my son and start appreciating the stars again.