I have never put together a time capsule, or at least I have no recollection of doing so. I wish I had or that my mother or father had made one so that I could learn more about them and the things they held dear. There are few, if any, animate objects that would show my children who I am but there are many moments in time that I wish I could preserve for that exact reason.
In their adulthood, I imagine that they would find this capsule in the attic among old trunks and plastic bins filled with their baby bedding and clothes, old toys, our pictures and memorabilia. My box of moments would be hidden in the back of the attic on a wire shelf with an old lamp and sleeping bag. It would be constructed of solid teak wood with a silver lock on the front. It would creak as they open it to find a jumble of moments lying there waiting to be revealed.
My daughter would instantly grab the one that had a slightly blue dim light emanating from it. This moment was important. She was swaddled tightly at bedtime as a young baby and I held her close and sang her the same song that was sung for years to come, Somewhere Over the Rainbow. There was a blueish dim light coming from her night light along with the soft light coming from the front porch through her window. The noise machine hummed and I was with her in a moment that grabbed me and taught me to slow down….”remember this”. She will feel this as she hustles about in her life; she will be struck by moments and that dim blue light will remind her to take in the moment, for it is fleeting.
My son will gravitate, as he would, toward the jumping movements coming from the corner of the box. As he lifts these combined moments, he will see his life, from the beginning in the womb, being full of movement for him but uncertainty for me. He will fast forward to the moment he joins this world and he will witness my heart swell beyond what one would think possible and he will understand that our hearts have no limits to how much they can grow. He will not be guarded from love.
My daughter lifts a similar moment but hers calls her because it is glowing with a kind of confidence that she is drawn to. As she sees it more clearly, she watches her mother go to the hospital full of nerves. She watches the fast motion scene and the fear melt away by the warmth of unconditional love and empowerment made possible by her birth. She did not know that fear could be dispelled by such beauty and she will not be afraid of insecure moments she knows she can conquer.
Both my daughter and son reach for the moment sounding of crickets coming from the center of the box. At first they are both puzzled because these moments are not familiar; they were sleeping children when these moments occurred yet they hold great value. The mother and father had trying times during their marriage once kids joined their family. They were overjoyed by love and family yet unsure how to manage their love for each other among it all. Throughout many fights, makeups, and “marriage sessions” taught by their counselor, the crickets witnessed these people unfold into a loving, trusting, committed and honest relationship. Both son and daughter solemnly understand that nothing worthwhile comes easy.
The day grows long and as they search the box, the sun goes down and they know they need to pack things up. They can always come back but one last moment beckons them from the bottom, it is tarnished but some areas still gleam. This collection of moments contain many that are unpleasant with lectures and yelling, frustrations and disappointments yet they see their mother trying her very best but not always succeeding. They see her lying awake some nights wishing she had said or done things differently. They also see her love in abundance and her hopes and dreams for her children; and they learn acceptance and forgiveness for all that she was and all that she was not.
They plan to return one day but for now, they move forward with understanding and love that allows them to do more than they knew possible.