How our definition of this word changes as we age.

Today is the first day of school in my area. Since I live on a street that ends at the local elementary school, I get to see all the children in my neighbourhood between the ages of 5 and 13 walk past my house heading to the big brick building where they"™ll spend roughly 5 hours a day for the next 10 months.

Guess which ones I love to watch the most? It"™s those first-timers, the little kindergartener"™s and grade one students. You can divide them into two categories: those filled with anticipation and the others who are filled with dread.

I LOVE the anticipation crowd! They"™re the ones that are running ahead of their Mom"™s or Dad, skipping over cracks in the sidewalk in their haste to get to school for the first day. With faces as shiny and radiant as their new backpacks and lunch pails, they exude anticipation for what is to come once they enter those hallowed doors of the school. "œSlow down, Suzie! Don"™t run, John!" anxious parents admonish their children. "œBut"¦ but"¦ I don"™t wanna be late!" exclaim the little ones. Such exuberance and unbridled joy.

It"™s been a long time since I felt that much bottled-up anticipation in my life, until last Friday, that is. My sweetheart decided to give in to my whining for a new puppy and brought home Max, a Havanese/Shih Tzu mix, from Paradise Kennels which is about 5 hours from our home. Along the way he"™d take periodic pictures of Max and send them to me via email with silly captions like, "œHe"™s not too impressed" showing Max woefully looking up from his cardboard box at my hubby.

By 4:00 pm my anticipation meter had blown through the roof. At around 4:10 the phone rang and my hubby said, "œWe"™re about 5 minutes away." I rushed outside and stood in the middle of driveway as I could not wait to see and hold our newest addition to the family. My hubby"™s car barely made it to a stop when I yanked open the passenger side door and reached into the box to lovingly pick up my new "˜baby"™ to pet him. I held that gorgeous ball of fur"¦ and he started licking my face showering me with puppy chow kisses. And you got it "“ I started bawling.

DSC01491For one brief moment in time, I was just like those little kids who were skipping on their way to school today. Full of anticipation as THE day had arrived filled with unlimited possibilities.

So, I raise my coffee cup to salute all the little children who traveled on the road to adulthood this morning, filled with bravery, wonderment, happiness, enthusiasm, with just a little anxiety thrown in for good measure.

I know exactly how you feel!

PS -  Here’s my all-time favorite song about Anticipation. Enjoy!

Anticipation – Carly Simon

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