LENTEN RECOLLECTIONS – #3
It’s Friday night and one of our boys just left to a church retreat, our daughter is at swim practice, and our youngest son is down the street at the park. Other than the dogs’ barking, it’s relatively quiet. Just another Friday? Not for long. Here’s why.
After a PTA meeting, one morning a few moms and I lingered and chatted. Just the typical conversation topics like whether to take AP classes or keep some semblance of sanity, why vaping is dominating and wreaking havoc on our children’s generation…and finally how unreasonably quick the middle and high school years fly.
Unexpectedly, one mom interjected loudly,
“Yup, only 104 Friday nights left with my daughter.”
Wow! I let out a gasp and feebly tried to compute my own child-less countdown. Thankfully, calendar math is not my forte, and truthfully, I didn’t want to think about it.
Of course, we all know it’s going to happen. The days of complaining about unmade beds, shuttling our kids everywhere, and hearing Ariana Grande sing the words “Thank You, Next” 35,000 times are going to come to a screeching halt and I suppose we should mentally prepare ourselves. But I don’t want to.
I know we truly want our children to tackle the world and employ all the good stuff WE as parents (fine, and others) taught them. But why does the time have to suddenly zoom by? I remember attending my daughter’s 6th-grade open house, where her math teacher laid out her students’ math careers for the next seven years!
I sat in that classroom pretending to take notes but instead wrote a story about a crazy, über-planning math teacher who lost a battle trying to ruffle my mom feathers. Four years later, just as Ms. Mill planned, our daughter sits in Honor’s Algebra 2 and like most students, questions when exactly she will need to simplify radicals in her life. My answer is always the same “If you become an Algebra 2 teacher”. This is when she walks away laughing.
As tricky as the journey can be whether you have 1 or 10 children, I’m convinced the departure is going to stink. I distinctly remember my dad telling my eldest sister as we dropped her off at college her Freshmen year, “You don’t have to go.” To which my mom quickly squelched his words with a stern “You’re going to be fine.” And she was. And ours will be too. It’s just all going to happen at once.
Our three children are stair steps and stages race past us like dominoes falling manically. Diaper changing overlapped, elementary school parties coincided, 5th and 8th-grade celebrations were the same day. Soon we’ll have one with a license, another a permit and then down the pike…college (God-willing) and the dreaded tuition overlap. In the interim, we will be busy. We will multitask, and plan, and worry and pray.
We’ll cram so much into our days and wish we had more time, but time comes at a price. It’s up to us to not blow it and forget to be genuinely present for our children. Why?
Well for me, it’s because there are only 128 Fridays, 3 more Easters, 2 more first days of school, 3 birthday cakes to bake and 20,900 hours until my oldest is off to college.
Please pray for me.
Take a moment and say a prayer for yourself. Know that whatever is on deck in your life, once you step up to the plate, you will not be alone.
Workout for a rainy day
Do as many burpees as possible…modify as needed.
Sound awful? Stretch!