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Of learner's permits, and that helpless, misty, melancholic feeling that life is going faster than you are...

So, earlier this week, I was driving my daughter Elizabeth somewhere, and while stopped at a red light, she says, out of the blue,

“Dad, when did you say you’d start teaching me how to drive?”

“Well, what I did with your brothers was start driving in big empty parking lots the summer before they got their learner’s permit so you get the feel of the car…you’re not allowed out on the roads until you have your learner’s permit.”

“So we can do that this summer?”


“Why not?”

“Because it won’t be until the summer before you turn 15 ½.”


I turned over to look at her, and of course it hit me: she will be 15 ½ this November.

It was one of those moments every parent must have, the sudden realization that your little girl, who just yesterday was twirling around in dress-up clothes, dancing with a toy doll, scooting around in her brother’s Big Wheel, is now a young lady nosing around  her mother’s closet for real clothes, dancing with her sophomore(?!?)-in-high-school-boyfriend and will soon be driving, for real, in her brother’s Honda CRV.


I’ve written before about the Latin expression age quod agis, which literally translated means “do what you are doing,” or “live in the present moment.”

Age quod agis is the only effective antidote I know to that helpless, misty, melancholic feeling that life is going faster than you are.

Age quod agis being present in the present, helps slow life down.  It helps yank you out of nostalgia and back into the blessings God is providing today, THIS day.

Age quod agis is about living in“the sacrament of the present moment.” And while there will always be a lump in my throat when I remember the kids when they were little and there will always be a part of me that wants to freeze-dry life’s precious moments to hold on to them forever, I need to remember the ironic truth that the best way to have yet more fond memories in the future is to live more fully today, in the sacrament of the present moment that God is giving us. Right now.


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