Her piano

There are other children in the family who’ve taken lessons over the years, kids who now are pecking away, working towards proficiency. But so far she is the only one who has really achieved mastery. She is the one who has really loved it. Spent hours with it. Savored the sounds. Made song after song after song her own, simply because the feel and the sound of the instrument bring her joy. The piano sings for her.

Last summer she worked 50 hours a week, and in the fall she went off to college. These days the piano only sings to me on the weekends. Sunday evening Erika went upstairs to the piano and sat down to play. I sat in the chair at the bottom of the stairs and closed my eyes to listen, suddenly conscious that my time with my girl is ticking away. This fall she’s moving into an apartment with some wonderful friends. Whether or not she comes home on the weekends, she is slowly stepping away, moving out into the world, heading towards adventure in a hazy future that only God can see.

I find joy in her success. I am grateful for the life she’s moving into, for the Christian fellowship she has found this first year away. I look forward to seeing her future unfold. But right now I’m sitting here at the bottom of the stairs, treasuring her presence, eyes closed tight so that my welling tears won’t slip out.

Sometimes life moves just a little too fast.

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  1. So lovely. Thanks again for making me cry in the middle of the day. And for making me think that the next 9 years are going to be gone before I know it…

  2. I find myself sharing your feelings as our oldest comes home to visit for the occasional weekend. I find myself closing my eyes, just trying to absorb her presence to hold her ever tighter in my heart as I have to relax my arms to let her take flight into her own life. And so it goes on down the line as our 2nd daughter ponders leaving home to finish college out of town and possibly out of state, and our youngest graduates high school in a few weeks.
    I hope you had a wonderful Mother’s Day!

  3. I love the phrase “a hazy future only God can see.” The days are passing so quickly with my eldest planning a wedding and my youngest threatening to graduate (or threatening not to graduate…depending on the day and mood. 🙂 ) I am so grateful that God does see it all…even when I cannot begin to imagine where life will take them. Enjoy the moments!

  4. Beautifully said. Lately, I feel like the fast forward button is stuck on my time with my kiddos. It all goes too fast. Hugs, Heather

  5. They grow up way too quickly! Beautiful post.


  6. I do the same thing every time my oldest son comes home. He came home yesterday and already…..but oh, the music is worth it and seeing what it means to them, and us, is too. lovely.

  7. Tearing up here…I hear it really does fly by.

    By the way Mary, I am happy to tell you my little boy has arrived. He’s over 2 weeks old and already changing, both thrilling and heart breaking at the same time.

  8. beth p. says:

    Oh Mary, I know exactly what you mean. It is too fast. I loved when they were like all my little ducklings following along behind. I’m so happy they are wonderful people with bright futures ahead, but, at the same time, I miss them.

  9. Oh….this post brought tears to my eyes. My middle child is our pianist and like Erika, the piano sings for her. God has blessed my sweet girl with a gift beyond compare. Your post made me fast forward in time a bit and I just want to run into the other room, grab her, hold her and then make her play for me!! 😀

  10. Jeanne A says:

    I, too, listen to the piano……..and the French horn…….and the bass guitar (electric) and know that time at home coming to an end— as his first year of college will begin in a meer blink of an eye.

    When we are out together I try to make the most of the limited time together—having a lunch out as we get measured for the prom, etc.

  11. If only we could freeze all those moments in time. My boys are still young but I know my time with them is limited and will fly by. Aren’t you so glad you took that moment to bask in it? I had a moment to bask just the other night. I loved every minute of it!

  12. a beautiful and poignant post. and a lovely photo of piano-playing hands.

  13. Is she in a music college?