I was driving through my neighborhood this morning and noticed the trees that line the streets.
When did these trees get so big? I said out loud to no one.
A lot of my life is spent looking straight ahead; at the road while I am driving in my car, at the soccer field where my youngest daughter plays, through the camera lens while documenting important events.
But on this day, I veered my gaze to the right of my well-traveled neighborhood streets. Then to the left.
Good God when did they get so large?
My oldest daughter just finished the last day of her junior year in high school a few weeks ago.
You know what that means?
The year she has anticipated her entire school career is finally here.
The year I have secretly been dreading, is finally here.
I have been weepy a lot more than normal these past few weeks. A song from 2010 put me over the edge one warm spring afternoon.
Wasn’t 2010, like, two years ago?
I have written about being “in the thick of it” in reference to parenting children.
In the thick of it, I was stressed out a lot, tired, complaining daily, overworked and underpaid. Just ready to be out of “in the thick of it”.
At the time, motherhood was filled with a lot more stress, a lot of dirty diapers, a lot more wiping faces and butts.
And in the old cliché adage, I now look back and wish I had enjoyed my children more when we were “in the thick of it”.
Don’t get me wrong, I love being a mom and have enjoyed most moments but it is as my oldest is about to leave the nest that I am realizing how many more moments I could have taken in.
I think even if you were 100% present in your children’s lives, volunteering at all of their events, attending all of their games, and only had positive experiences, you would still realize there were many more moments you could have taken in.
Could’ve, should’ve, would’ve.
The high school bus passed down the street this morning as we were in our morning routine of yelling about the day from one room to another, making breakfasts, packing lunch, making sure the field day money was in the backpack and I had a moment of thinking about the “kids” who just graduated high school.
I knew a lot of those “kids” who graduated a few Sunday’s ago. Who played dress up in our home, ate peanut butter sandwiches on our back patio, traded fruit chews on our front stoop.
They no longer take that school bus that rambles down our street each day.
I remember when that bus took Anna to school. Replaced by riding to school with friends. Replaced by driving herself.
I have an almost fourth grader in Ella now and she is still okay with hanging out with us, sleeping in our room as was her older sister at this age.
I was always happy that we had an almost eight-year age gap in our girls for many reasons but never happier than now because I can appreciate these moments with Ella that I might not have necessarily appreciated with Anna.
Most likely because when she was Ella’s age, I was knee-deep in sleepless nights, diaper changes and colic.
I will miss the noise. I will miss the mess. I will miss the busyness of it all.
I know I still have many years left in the mothering part of my motherhood gig but this time, I will take it in a little more.
For the first time in seven years, I am taking the summer off of writing on my blog.
I will be sharing old posts here and there, I might even throw in an occasional giveaway and of course my obligatory Netflix posts, but for the most part, I won’t be writing new content until the end of August.
Because those trees are growing and I just don’t want to miss a minute of it.