The other day I found myself, as I do every now and then, going down the rabbit hole of old photos and videos on my phone. It’s like a Target run for me. I went back searching for a specific photo and ended up going through memories I hadn’t even thought of revisiting, lost in the past. I found myself smiling or crying as I reminisced.

It made me wonder: if I could, would I freeze a moment? A time in my life when people and things could continue to be as they were forever?

I stumbled upon a video of my grandfather kissing my grandmother at their 60th anniversary dinner a few years back and was instantly transferred to that occasion. That wonderful night when my grandfather was still alive. When his love for my grandmother was as plain as day and a fantastic, tangible example to the rest of the family watching as they blissfully shared a PG-13 kiss.

RELATED: Some Moments Are Made For Memories

Really, thinking back to it, I’m almost certain one of the kids had a cold that dinner, and we had gone through a few rough nights of little sleep. It wasn’t all a carefree celebration, but I was only reminded of the happiness I felt looking through those videos.

My eyes watered and I felt the desire to go back in time to that event. To freeze it, to allow my grandfather to live longer. But then I realized that even though the moment has passed, his love continues to live through his family, including in his 15 great-grandchildren.

I am thankful for pictures and videos that remind me of all of those incredible fragments that have made up my life to this point—but if I’m being honest, even if I could I would not wish to live it over and over again. That’s not what it’s all about.

If we make the past our never-ending present, sure, we can recreate those moments that bring an inexplicable amount of joy, but we’ll fail to make new happy memories. I’ll miss watching life go on, seeing my kids grow up, or going through my own transformations. So, no thanks, Bill Murray, I’ll skip my groundhog day.

RELATED: One Day This Will All Be Memories

I know there will always be sad experiences, and at times life will seem tiring or arduous because that’s just the name of the game.

But to continue forward means capturing new memories.

New pictures and videos I can look back at later and find myself smiling without even realizing I am doing it. It means letting bits of my past emit a nostalgic wonderful feeling of joy I will forever treasure for as long as I live. Recalling that moment through my memories, but always remembering to come back to the present and live life as best as I can, honoring the memory of my loved ones who lived before me. 

To quote the very wise Dr. Seuss, “Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.”

So God Made a Mother book by Leslie Means

If you liked this, you'll love our new book, SO GOD MADE A MOTHER available for pre-order now!

Pre-Order Now

Lisi Lopez

Lisi is a Latin wife to her college sweetheart and mother to three incredible kids. She worked as an industrial engineer before her middle son was born with Down syndrome and she was promoted to stay-at-home mom. She is now figuring out the journey of motherhood and enjoying all its fun surprises. She also has an advocate Instagram account for her son, @ourextraluckyworld, and a blog, https://ourextraluckyworld.wixsite.com/blog .

I Want To Be a Noticer

In: Faith, Motherhood
Parents and child in snow

In this season, I want to be a noticer. I don’t want to be noticed. I want to do the noticing. Noticing: to pay attention to or take notice of; to perceive, become aware of. I want to notice how many eggs my chickens provide for me every day. What a miracle? I want to notice the way the little boys build ramps on the coffee table out of the library books. So cute! RELATED: The Only Parts of Childhood That Last Forever Are the Memories, and I Don’t Want To Be Too Busy To Make Them With You I...

Keep Reading

I’m So Thankful My Mom Made Us Take That Photo

In: Living
I'm So Thankful My Mom Made Us Take That Photo www.herviewfromhome.com

She wanted a family picture of all of us. Everyone was in town celebrating the holidays together and she wanted another picture. We gave her a hard time, teasing that we had 492 family pics already and we hadn’t changed since the last one. She frowned at us. Then said, “We’re doing it.” Reluctantly we gathered around, goofing off and teasing the entire time. Someone snapped the memory and Mom was happy. She printed it and posted it on social media, excited to show off her kids and grandkids. We didn’t really mind. Except it was just another family photo....

Keep Reading

Your Kids Will Remember How You Made Them Feel—The Rest is Just Details

In: Grief, Grown Children, Motherhood
Mother touching child's forehead

I stared at the empty notebook page where I was to summarize my mother’s life. Thirty-nine years of her being mine all tied together in a four-minute speech.  Her funeral was the next day. I just had to start with one word. Bracing myself for the heavy emotions and Kleenex by my side, I placed my pen down on the paper.  To my surprise, the words poured out of me effortlessly. My pen danced its way down the paper as I wrote about how much she meant to me. RELATED: Only a Motherless Daughter Knows How she would chase us down in the driveway...

Keep Reading