40 Reflections: 40 days of raw recollections during the Lenten Season
As a mom, some of my favorite moments are spent chatting with other parents. These long, relatable, hilarious, commiserating, conversations occur on sidelines, bleachers, parking lots, auditoriums, PTA meetings, churches, or anywhere our kids take us on their childhood journeys.
Tonight was no exception – here are snippets from my recent cache of conversations:
- One dad talked about his son’s happiness when he made the Varsity team yet his playing time diminished and now spends time on the bench.
- After exchanging quick pleasantries, a friend dashes away from the tennis match announcing her next stop to deliver her son to baseball and daughter to softball. There’s something about audibly sharing our destinations with other parents. The interpretation is: I’m crazy busy, please watch my kiddo while I’m gone.
- My phone dings and I quickly click the side of my phone to silence it…it reads, “I’m swamped at work and won’t make the match, is Luke playing yet?” I quickly respond. Another mom making sure our band of mothers stays strong.
- Pushing a stroller with her nearly two-year-old, another mom heads out to take her 12-year-old to his tennis lessons asking if someone helped her 17-year old jumpstart his car yesterday…and if they knew who it was, to please thank them. It takes a village.
- A dad chats for a minute about orchestra and sports and suddenly remembers he needs to buy a hamburger for his son because the provided chicken sandwich is not on his preferred foods list. The dad rolls his eyes knowing how ridiculous it sounds but we all get it…anything for our kids.
- Another mom stops to say hello and when I asked about her son, she confesses she worries because he doesn’t come home very often from college. “He will,” I tell her, just give him time…I think about how much easier it is to give advice than to take it.
- My son then tells me a player’s parent passed away this week. An acquaintance from our church and I imagine the empty pillow next to her every night an indent still fresh and her struggle to explain it all to her boys.
- On my walk with the dogs, I visit with our neighbor who said he gets frustrated as it takes him twice as much time to do the same things he used to. I recall a tennis mom earlier in the day who told me her father just turned 90 and his mantra was “A body in motion stays in motion”. I share it with him. He then mentions his upcoming 80th birthday in August bragging a little like my son who just turned 18 today and my student who wore a crown for her 5 3/4 birthday. Yes. 3/4. The connection and joy to reach the next age when we are children or senior citizens is uncanny. Our middle years tend to blur if only the celebration mentality would seep in…
These chats with moms, dads, kids, grandparents, teachers, and coaches, remind me life can seem like a pretty deep pool sometimes, so the more we latch onto each other the more buoyant we become.
Just imagine if we all tried harder to seize the pockets of time from our busy days, and stopped to ask people how they are. It’s just nice to have a friend sit beside us on our roulette wheel of emotions reminding us we’re not alone.
Please pray for Ukraine and maybe say a Rosary this weekend.