Throughout my life, there have been moments I've imprinted on my brain and heart forever. During each of those moments, I've closed my eyes tight to take a mental picture. I store those memories in a special place I access when the first colors of fall fill my eyes, during the quiet moments I spend alone, and in the middle of the night when I cuddle my children back to sleep.
It's there that I hold the last hug I shared with my father before he died, the 10 shades of green on the first hill I laid eyes on in Ireland during a trip with my parents, the moment I realized I was in love with Ash, the first time I locked eyes with Noah, and the car ride to the hospital minutes before meeting Maya where all I could think about was how beautiful life is.
Over the weekend, our family took a tour of the White House, and I stood in front of the Oval Office with each of my children. Looking in at the President's desk, I squeezed my eyes extra tight thinking about how much I love Ash, Noah and Maya. I thought about a time when families like ours wouldn't have been welcome in that same hallway. I glanced in at the photos on President Obama's desk. My eyes caught the pictures of sweet moments of the President with his wife, Michelle, and the kids. I thought about how he had come from parents that looked a lot like Ash and me. Then, I looked at my own children. Noah's eyes were wide with wonder, and Maya's arm waved back and forth as she practiced her waving. I closed my eyes again.
Special moments filled my heart throughout the tour. I took so many mental pictures that I'll reflect on when I share some of the special moments of the day with our children. We did bring a real camera with us too, and I thought I'd share with you some of the physical pictures we took while on the White House tour.