I don’t want summer to end.
I only have a few summers remaining before my kids no longer have a summer vacation; before they are thrown head first into the real world instead of off the dock into the lake. Soon there will be no more water fights and camping on the beach. There will be less time together as a family and more time with their friends. I only have a few years left before my children are no longer children, only a few years before the two of them quickly shift into adulthood.
The excitement I once had for Back-to-School has come to a screeching halt. I don’t possess the same joy as I witness on my friend’s faces or read on their status updates. I am not jumping up and down or cheering for my kids to leave the house for six hours at a time. My children are teenagers. Soon enough, these two kids will not have a summer vacation at all, especially one of which I am a part of.
I have very little time in which I get to watch them walk towards the school, backpacks strapped to their shoulders and disappear into a misty Autumn morning. And as this summer comes to a close, I find myself holding on to my babies tighter than I have ever before.
In a few years, both of them will be lost in college applications or renting their first apartment, working part or full-time jobs, and heading out into the real world. They will be becoming the adults I hopefully prepared them to be.
They will no longer need me to find their shoes, or help with homework. The screaming and slamming of doors will suddenly stop. I will cease to be the primary influence in their life and as challenging as the crazed days of chubby-cheeked children shrieking and crying once were, I am watching it come to an end. I no longer feel a cutting at my heart while they bellow, “Mommy, I don’t want to go to school.” Instead, my heart aches at the thought of them no longer grasping my leg as I drop them off for Kindergarten. Now they walk away, while I beg them for a simple kiss goodbye.
They gradually will need me less in the upcoming years and the school days are quickly passing.
Trust me when I say, I completely understand how you joyous mothers feel. The thought of twenty minutes to myself, let alone six hours of child free time, brought me to a euphoric state when they were little. I too was the tired, overworked, and exhausted Mom. The primary years are challenging. To be fair, all the years are challenging, but eventually, they are gone.
I distinctly remember feeling an overwhelming delight as my kids headed off to school, not so many years ago. I even recollect a moment where I sat on the couch after they left and well, I just sat. I sat in silence, pure blissful silence.
This year it will not be the same.
Kids are only little for so long, and although I am proud of the little humans I have raised, it does not make it any easier watching them get ready to navigate this world on their own. With only a few years left of school, I find myself less excited about this precious time to myself. I am coming to the realization I will be left with more time to myself than I will know what to do with, and soon!
So to all the Mom’s cheering and jumping up and down with excitement as the school year begins. Remember, this too will come to an end. There will come a point when you no longer revel in the quiet moments because all moments will be quiet. I beg you to take it all in, breathe through the tough days, and embrace the little moments, even the spilled milk. For there will come a time, when you will find yourself wishing you could have every little moment back.
So as the final month of summer vacation comes to an end, I will squeeze every minute I can get out of these days. I will throw one more water balloon and play one more game of checkers. I will swim with them in the lake and buy them one more messy ice cream cone. I’ll even let them eat it in the car. I only have a few years left before these days are gone, and it’s true what they say — they go by way too fast.
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This post was syndicated with expressed permission.