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On 'Boyhood': Are We Letting Life's Real Treasures Pass Us By? (Exclusive Clip)

When did I become the mother of a first-grader? Where did time go and what did I capture from that? I’m not talking about the never-ending loads of folders with labeled videos and pictures, but those seconds that make you feel as if time stood still—like when your kid walks alone for the first time or when she's able to put shoes on without help.

I was so consumed with the day-to-day routine and planning for the big events that I let many beautiful moments slide by unnoticed. When you’re a young parent, it can be even more challenging to know how to prioritize. In a split second I will close my eyes and my son will be graduating high school while my daughter graduates college. I’ll be left with an empty nest, just like Patricia Arquette’s character in "Boyhood." (Check out our exclusive clip below!)

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The film is shot with the same cast over a period of 12 years. Arquette plays a single mom who struggles with the challenges of being a parent and a woman. The entire plot feels genuine, relevant and relatable; a family going through changes, including divorces and remarriages, is certainly not far-fetched.

I still remember the day my daughter was born. After an exhausting 32-hour labor, she was finally in my arms, feeling the warmth of my heart, touched by my tears of joy. I still shed a tear or two when I think about that moment. It was magical.

I was 22 years old when she was born. After a short three-month courtship, I was engaged, then married and, shortly after, on the path to starting a family. But I wasn’t ready for that. I didn’t know what it meant to be a wife, much less a mother. I had just started learning what it meant to be a good daughter, so how did I pass to the other side so quickly?

Like Patricia Arquette said, "Maybe life is the moments in between those big moments."

Well, blind, inconvenient, consuming, naive and innocent love can do that to you.

I changed my goals of living in New York and traveling the world for those I never knew I wanted. Everything happened so quickly that I didn’t have time to stop and think about anything. I just did what I had to do and became who I had to be.

In that journey, I learned many things and made many mistakes, yet I tried my hardest under the circumstances to be the best I could for my two kids—not for myself and not for anyone else. But at some point I got lost. I found myself questioning my choices and realized I had put too much emphasis on the destination and not on the experience.

In my urge to make sure my children were always fed, cleaned, schooled, I forgot to savor the little things that were happening around me. For example, the fact that somehow my children discovered "The Flintstones" and "The Jetsons" and fell in love with them as much as I did, or that my daughter kept a small suitcase packed for when—as she says—she goes to Paris with me. These are just two of hundreds of amazing moments that are easy to miss in the chaos of everyday life. I always imagined I would be exempt from that—I would be the one to pay attention. And then one day I woke up, and it was time to drop off my daughter for her first day in first grade.

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It never hurts to put our lives in perspective and take a second to think about where we are going. And if we don’t know, do we at least know who we want to be? Are we truly taking the time to live our lives and enjoy or are we just silent bystanders? All I know is that I’ve learned what matters is not making plans, but enjoying the process of it all and to be present in each moment.

Like Patricia Arquette said, "Maybe life is the moments in between those big moments." I could not agree more.

"Boyhood" is available on Digital HD December 9, 2014, and Blu-ray on January 6, 2015.

Photographs by IFC Films

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