(After watching Alice through the looking Glass)
"Okay boys, time for bed." I said, walking my two sons to their rooms.
"I don't want to go to sleep. I'll stop time! " says my youngest son Anjel, now seven, jumping into bed.
"You can't stop time Anjel!" My oldest chimes in. "It's impossible." He finishes without taking his eyes off his tablet.
Anjel looks up at me , " it's just a movie dad, It's not real?" He asks.
"It's a fantasy Anjel. Imagination." I tell him, standing at the foot of my bed.
I turn to look at Alejandro, still focused on his reading.
"You know Alex, it's not impossible to stop time." I tell him. I draw his attention off of his device and he looks at me. "I've stopped time, son. More than once." I added.
He stares a bit longer, trying to determine whether I am being serious or not. "How did you do it dad?" He finally asks.
"It's not easy." I tell him. "You really gotta want it and you won't be able to hold it for long. Truth is, you won't even know you've done it. You'll only remember you did. You will remember the entire scene. Your mind started to slow, your heart steadied and then poof! Time stopped. Only after will you understand why and how you did it but the few times that you were able to stop it, you'll know it was the greatest second of your life. I promise you that."
He stares for a second then brings his attention back to his reading.
"Okay. Lights out boys" I said and began to walk out.
"Good night dad" each of them say.
I walked out and sat on the couch. Angelica, walked into the room quickly after to give the boys their hug and kiss and puts them to sleep. As I watch my wife play with my children and hear them laugh and play before finally settling down, I realized that I had managed to stop time again, and again, did not notice until after. As my oldest son took his eyes off his tablet, to look at me, I caught his glance. My mind slowed and I saw every characteristic of his face. My heart steadied and I was overcome by feelings of love, pride, sorrow and joy. Poof! Time stopped. I looked at his face. I noticed the change that I had been dreading. He is leaving the childhood age and entering early adolescence. The days of being his hero were almost over. The days of daydreams and imagination, the days of believing he could fly, the days of chasing fantasies and whispering his hopes and dreams into the wind and the heart so pure and so full of joy will soon be sacrificed to the cruelty and injustices of the world. I felt it in my soul. I would do everything and anything in my power to keep him this way, though I knew I couldn't. I looked at him and saw every moment I threw him up in the air, every story I ever told him, every hug I ever gave him, every vision of him as a child looking up at me and calling me daddy. I wanted to hold this second forever but just as soon as it had stopped, the clock began to move again. The second was gone......... I smiled to myself. Another one I get to keep. Another one I get to put away.
I may not be able to stop time as long as I want or stop my two sons from growing up but I am truly grateful for the seconds I get to keep. I hold them very close to my heart. I hope my son believed me when I told him we can stop time. I know I have been able to. I know you may have been able to too. We only get a limited amount of time and once your time is up, it's up. Hold onto the seconds you get, as I do. You're never guaranteed more.