I have a confession: I am not a big fan of today’s Carpe Diem philosophy.
I know my children will grow up fast, I see it right before my eyes. I know that moments with them are precious. I know how my son’s head smells, how beautiful my little girl’s eyes are and how quick my big girl is on her feet. I notice all that and more. After all, I am their mom - and a highly sensitive person (HSP).
But what the Carpe Diem is telling me, is: “You’re not doing enough! You’re not “there” enough!”, or “You don’t have enough time, and you’re not using it properly!”. Carpe Diem, while claiming to be a philosophy that is all about slowing down, is in truth about “not enough”, as Brene Brown would say. It is about scarcity. It is about pursuing an ideal that doesn’t exist.
Because it tells us that each moment is precious, and that is not the case. As a child, I would say: “This day should be crossed out of the calendar. Like it never existed.” I still feel like this about some days. The days where I didn’t get enough sleep and my body shuts down on me. The days that are so loud from temper tantrums and cries that my ears and my head hurt. I get my share of such days, too. After all, I'm a mom, and a HSP. What is my philosophy, then?
I love taking pictures. And maybe photography is a good metaphor for the way I see life. Because I know that especially with my digital SD card, I can take thousands of pictures, but not all pictures are worth taking. Not all pictures we take are worth keeping.
Some of these pictures can be improved. They aren’t perfect but there is something particularly interesting about them, and they can be made into something exquisite. But the truth is that so many the pictures we take are bad, especially if like me we’re amateurs.
Some bad days can be improved, but others are just bad. For me, turning a bad day around makes just as much sense as going shopping when I hardly have money for food. I’d rather wait them out and wait for a better time. I refuse to spend my time and energy on a day that isn’t worth it.
I don’t want to freeze time. I love the changes I see in my children and revel in them. I love when they can do and talk more and more. I love seeing my wonderful children slowly but steadily changing into wonderful adults. I’ve never regretted my children getting older because while our relationship will change, I know that it will still be there. I will still be their mom.
No, I don’t want to freeze time. I want to capture moments that matter.
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