Time and timing are everything on the commute. We leave the house at just the right minute to ensure we arrive to work on time, and then we try to leave work at the end of the day at a reasonable hour so we can arrive home in a timely manner for those who await our return. But time is a different thing all together in the space between commutes. Evenings, the wee hours of the mornings, and the weekends are filled with moments to memorize, hours to honor, and days to delight in. They are filled with the expected and the unexpected and interwoven with drops of love, laughter and even tears.

We had the pleasure this past weekend to enjoy a small reunion of family we had not seen for some time. Gathered together for one day, Gary and I were surrounded by my beautiful nieces, their families, and my father, and in the laughter and the chatting I became quite aware of how powerful a kind word, a deep conversation and a quick laugh can be. The afternoon with family was magical. The power of love, laughter and tears was all-consuming and really more than I thought I could handle. It was as though all of the years that have been flying past without us sharing space came to a sudden halt, and for one afternoon the hours ran counterclockwise, taking us back to childhood memories while the reality of adulthood stood grinning before us.

When the day grew long and Gary and I needed to bid our farewells to return home to care for our dogs, the love I had been gathering all afternoon was captured and magnified by one tiny little girl. My sweet, great-niece who has only seen me one other time in her five years of being, nestled up to me and we shared a quiet moment sitting on the bottom of the stairs. Behind us was boisterous laughter, but we didn’t hear a sound. She placed her forehead on mine and stared into my eyes and the power of love was hers to command — and she gave it to me. A few minutes in time were permanently etched in my heart, and things I thought I had always known suddenly became new and held deeper meaning.

The time between commutes is not space, but rather a universe. Sharing laughter with those we love can erase years, and the most powerful love can come from the tiniest of hearts.

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