When I taught second grade not so long ago, I always looked forward to celebrating holidays in the classroom. Whether they were Thanksgiving, Halloween or Valentine's Day parties, I was excited to take part in these fun times once again at school, even as an adult. Now that I am mom to my almost 16-month-old son, Zachary, I'm able to relive childhood memories at a whole new level.
Any celebration with Zachary brings with it joy and reminiscing. Watching him gaze in awe at the Christmas lights this past year put a smile on my face. Not only are we creating new memories as a family, but my son's face lighting up brings warm thoughts of my Christmases as a child, waking up early with my sister to take a peek at our presents.
For Easter, my husband, Shane, and I go on egg hunts with Zachary. And Halloween is one of Shane's favorite holidays - he loves to dress up, but in the past unless there was a party to go to, there wasn't much of a reason to put on a costume. Now that we have a son, Shane is eager to hit the streets for trick-or-treating.
This year, accompanied by a lion cub and a man with a mullet, I walked door-to-door with our niece and nephews; the adults didn't take candy, but we loved showing off our costumes.
Zachary helps me appreciate these simple delights as I get to be, in a sense, a child again, while at the same time I mother him. My heart warms when I see my son play, laugh, love and learn every day. It's a feeling that is hard to put into words.
Watching my parents relive childhood when they interact with Zachary is another emotion difficult to describe. For my mom and dad, it brings back memories of raising their five girls, and makes them proud helping teach their 12 grandchildren life lessons and pass down stories from one generation to another.
Whether you're a parent, grandparent, teacher, aunt or uncle, I hope you take a moment or two to be a child with the little ones you love, and create new memories while reliving those you made so many years ago.
Email Sarah McKeown at firstname.lastname@example.org