It’s the fifth hour of the road trip, just me and my three-year-old. The big kids stayed at home with their dad, while I drive through four states to Ohio, the place I grew up, to attend a funeral.
The little guy is good in the car and after watching trucks, loads of construction, taking a long nap, “reading” a few books, and stopping for an early dinner, he is talking away.
“Gramma made oatmeal for Grandpa yesterday morning.”
“Yesterday?” I ask.
Oh, there is something magical about three year olds, isn’t there? This kid hasn’t seen Grandma and Grandpa in six months.
“Yesterday, I broke a string on my guitar.” (Nine months ago.)
“Yesterday, Phin burned his hand on the stove.” (This incident happened on Mother’s Day about five years ago. My husband was cooking pancakes to serve me in bed, but turned around just long enough for my second child, who was two and a half at the time, to reach up and burn his hand on the griddle. Even though it was a memorable Mother’s Day, it was at least two years before my youngest, the one who is reporting the incident now, was even born.)
“Yesterday, I had a churro [chew-o] at Costco.” (We haven’t been there in three weeks.)
“Yesterday, Santa was riding on a fire truck.”
My daughter looks at him sideways. “That was, like, last Christmas.”
“He doesn’t understand what ‘yesterday’ means, honey,” I say.
“Shouldn’t you teach him?”
I shake my head and wink at her. No.
~ ~ ~
To read the rest of this essay, where time starts to bend and I get all honest about my age, please continue onto Coffee+Crumbs where it was first published.
Thank you, as always, for reading!