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A Few More Times

So before we end
And then begin
We’ll drink a toast to how it’s been
A few more hours to be complete
A few more nights on satin sheets
A few more times that I can say
I’ve loved these days

— Billy Joel, I’ve Loved These Days

When we love the days we’re passing through, it becomes easy to believe that they’ll always be just as they have been. But we know this to be untrue. We see the changes in those around us, and in ourselves. Life is about the passing from these days to whatever will be next, and so on and on, until we too pass. This is our song, and the band will one day play on without us. So it goes.

It occurred to me that I haven’t spoken to two people recently who were part of every waking moment of my life when they were growing up. A few text messages, a brief “hello, I’m thinking of you” now and again. We all get busy: our children move away to build their lives, our parents and siblings and closest friends move across the dance floor and out of sight, coworkers change jobs or retire, and even our favorite barista or waitress moves on to other things. Life is change.

A puppy came into my life, changing my world for the better in most ways, but changing my days profoundly. There are things that must be done when you have a young one in the house. There are things you must consider when you go out for any amount of time. There are few things more disruptive than this, yet so fulfilling at the same time. Puppies, like children, fill empty spaces and time in chaotic and beautiful ways.

This week we finished a bathroom renovation that took entirely too long to wrap up. It became an ongoing joke that the two-week project might become a two-year project. Other than adding a puppy or baby to your life, a home renovation project is one of the more disruptive ways to flip your routine upside down. This summer we managed to do two of those change agents at the same time. No wonder it feels at times like I’ve lost my bearings.

But just like that, the puppy is settling in, the renovation is done, and summer is over. We blink and we miss it. So don’t blink if you can help it. Yes, I’ve loved these days, but don’t they just fly right by?

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