A Short Visit Suddenly Again
My son has come home again for a week, it is probably the worst week of the year for me as I spend most of my waking hours when not at work doing something for Celebrate Life Half Marathon now only a few of days away. It doesn't seem to bother him that my time is spent in things that don't concern him. But he stops and touches my hair like he always did since he was a baby and walks by saying a soft I love you.
I bought him a new mattress the other day and got to see that smile again in his face, the same smile he had years ago, too many years to have the same matress, when his grandmother bought him a bed.
I look at my child as he drives to a restaurant and notice he hasn't shaven since he came home and realize he looks on the outside more a man than the boy I still see in him. And as I smile sitting across the table from him in the hour I took to have dinner with him, I remember my feelings when I saw him graduating:
The diapers were coming along fine. This one needed a change and I was tired, sort of wishing for the time it would go away.My friend called from California. After our conversation I shared that I was about to change a diaper….again. Her reply was “enjoy it, it won’t last long”.
How could I enjoy it, I thought? I loved my son and I was a happy mother but the diapers…if there was a better way; there was also the sleep I was being robbed off at night, the sudden crying that made me rush to the room. If only he could get older faster….
Then one day it was time to put him on the bus, he wore a button down shirt and carried a book bag bigger than he was. He brought home his first drawing that I placed in an album hoping to save all his drawings.
Soon I had to attend his first field day and watched him jump over hurdles.
And then he was learning to read but suddenly he was no longer in kinder and one day he had won the first National Geography contest and his name was on the first plaque placed in the school. And just as suddenly, he stopped having birthday parties, he was too old for them…
One day I noticed his voiced had changed and my boy was shaving. And then, I was the passenger and he the driver.
Where did the years go?
He was opinionated just like his mother but suddenly I found that he knew more than I did. That it was difficult to win an argument without all the facts.
That he had become his own person as has my daughter. And I wonder how much of me is in them and how much of me I hope is not…
But what I do want my children to know is that life is not always easy, but it’s worth living.
That sometimes and many times they will have to fight for what they love. And many times they will lose.
That life is full of mistakes; but that without them we would never grow.
That the worth of a person is not measured in the mistakes they make but in their effort to correct them.
That those who will place more weight on their mistakes and overlook their kindness, and their loyalty, are not worth having in their lives.
That there will be times when someone will show up at a ceremony to watch them receive an award or do something important, and they should remember that gesture and forget an argument.
That no matter how much they want something, they should never step on somebody else to achieve it.
That they should take pride in what they do. And they should always keep their dignity.
That it is the little things, ice cream in the rain, a picnic in the park, that will give meaning to their lives.
That when they have their own children, they will begin to wish for time to enjoy life with them just as I do today.