Sunday, a Special Family Day.
Today started as so many Sunday’s in my memory has, with some fresh coffee and a loose game plan that usually involves time outside, some reading for pleasure, and a trip to the store for something unique to eat at night.
What makes today an unusually special day is representative of just how much my life has changed over the course of the last year. At a point in the night I’m never sure of, our little wonder child slips into bed and we get to start the day with a magical energy of union, of communion in a deeply spiritual sense. Bumps, arms flailing and laughter are all part of it.
Being a parent biologically I do not know yet, but I understand the role, I understand the process of shifting into selflessness from and creating something for the future being in the forefront of all decisions. Magic isn’t really the right word, “purpose” meeting “power to change” the world feels more appropriate and is something I think all parents recognize that is their role for being here on Earth.
Our day on the farm in Sweden today was a very typical August day, storybook like with highs in the lower 70’s F, grass green as can be from a heavy rainy summer, and a light breeze that makes the sun about as perfect as one can get. It’s a day where you see locals on outside “sun bathing” or finding any excuse to be outside. Often time on decks family or friends gather with a fresh pie, Norwegian waffles (something I have grown to LOVE), and coffee or tea.
We had a wonderful visit from one of Sunniva’s friends where she got to catch up on old times while I got the pleasure of making a grocery shopping experiences into an “adventure” with little G. Sunday is a busy shopping day on our border down as many Norwegians flood this area for cheaper products, so we made our way just past lunch to beat the crowds.
It had been a week or two since we had what is now simply known as “Jared-Barn Hagen” which started as a day of activities I would come up with during days she was away from school from taking me back to my days of being Mr. Jared to a class of 4-5 year olds 15 yrs. ago during undergrad observation work at a daycare to what is now my real life with my new step daughter. I get to channel my love of art, drama, and imagination (the yin to a brain that loves science, philosophy, and business) and engage with an extremely gifted young one.
You see, there is a creature that hides these special treats we get for these treasure hunting days…in the candy section we carefully scoop out 10 pieces of her favorite type from the bins near the front of the local Maxi-Mat. From there, we shift into a real serious mode of fast paced grabbing paper and crayons to create THE MAP. This isn’t just any map, it’s a map leading to these “treasures” and each clue leads you to the next one. What makes this map even more EXTRA SPECIAL is the sea salt we sprinkle on it after drawing out the grid of the house and yard so that the “Spirit of Candy Treasures” helps guide us to where these nuggets may be. Yep, an epic adventure of me being extremely cautious to hide candy with her not looking or be just one step ahead as the MAP continues to amaze her with how the “Spirit of the Candy Treasures” guides us, step….by….step. These experiences never get old. I never tire of them, and in fact can only imagine one day the feeling of wishing I could do it again. As a parent, you hold on to what you have and realize it’ll fade into the next age, the next adventure we hope to be ready to be part of with them.
After a dinner of cheese quesadillas for the little one, and a healthy salad with all the veggies we could find glazed lightly with amazing sweet oil and vinegar based dressing, we sat down to watch the second Narnia in two days.
To look over and see our cat Socrates and these two ladies that have been instrumental in the change of my life is one of the moments where time just stops. Where the magic of “family” grabs your heart with everything it’s got and says, “This is why you are here.” The rest of life, carving out this business, bills, and all the rest is just stuff………..THIS, is why I am here.
Yep, another Sunday filled with some of the old things I’ve always loved about it and plenty of new. Wherever you are, cherish what you hold to be special in your heart, tell those around you love them as much as you can. Hearing little G say 6 times today “Dawed!! (Jared from her little Norwegian quickly turning fluent mind) You is the best daddy in the whole world,” and hugging my neck let’s me just smile up to the sky and say thank you to God. That feeling, the pure love of the child, the connection and growth of this international family slowly taking root is why I hunger to keep pressing forward, to keep dreaming, to realize that the future is as bright as we want it to be.