In years to come, when I look back on this era in my life, I might possibly miss it. Possibly. That’s a bit of a stretch at the moment, while I seem to be perpetually tired, hungry, and exasperated. Then again, I didn’t think I’d miss having wee ones who didn’t sleep through the night or have control of their bowel movements, either. I don’t miss diapers, I hasten to assure you. Not one little bit. I do miss sleepy warm snuggles and happy wiggly babies who grew so fast you could barely keep up with them.
We’re in the Teen Years, now, and I’ve learned that some myths are all too true, but others seem not to materialize for all children, at least. The thing about Edgy kids, and Emotional Drama Llamas? We’ve got those. The prickly Teen Boy who can’t stand a hug? That one we don’t have. I dropped him at school this morning and he surprised me by leaning over to kiss the side of my head just before he slid out of the car and ran for the school building. It was charming in itself, although not completely assuaging my annoyance at having to lose 40 minutes of my day because he wouldn’t listen to me warning him he’d miss the bus if he didn’t hurry on with his shoes and socks. And he really likes to get a hug goodnight. So there’s that.
I’d looked at my forming Fall schedule a few weeks ago and emitted a loud Eeep! as recorded here on the blog. That’s… not getting any better. Worse, actually, as things keep getting added into it. I finally broke down and enlisted the help of the First Reader, since some days require me to literally be in two places at once. I really, really need the girls to learn how to drive and be independent that way. Currently the Ginja Ninja has college, appointments, and it’s not too bad. But the Junior Mad Scientist is involved in some odd school activities in evenings and on weekends, has physical therapy, a new job (woo! Yay kiddo!), and will be starting college classes next month. The Little Man has a bus, um, should have a bus! And only one after-school activity currently, but he also pointed out he’d like more time with me since I’m constantly ferrying his sisters around and don’t spend time with him (or buy him food, or drinks, like I do them when we’re on the go and don’t have it with us). So we’re scheduling random Mom-Son shopping or other errands to allow him some parity in Parent Attention. The First Reader and I, giggling a little bit, sneaked out last night on the pretense of picking something up, then parked at the local park for about a half an hour while the pot roast finished in the InstantPot. We felt like teenagers sneaking some snogging time, but it was so very good to have each other with no interruptions and distractions. And, um, we weren’t actually making out. We’re old enough to appreciate talk time more, and we have a room thankyouverymuch.
I was at a loss for words the other day to describe how I feel when trying to coordinate my life right now. The First Reader laughed and suggested it was like the Normandy Invasion. I have to juggle five schedules, plus plan for erratic work demands, and keep everyone on-track. It does make me feel like I need a sand table and multiple overlays for calendars… plus maps. More maps. Sigh. Not to mention that the FR is dealing with job transition stuff and health stuff and, well, status normal at the Nut House, everything’s crazy.
So while I can look at it objectively and see that I might someday miss this, when the nest is empty and I’m alone for drives in the car, with no more chances to chat for a few minutes with my children. I’ll miss their developing minds that reveal how they think, how smart they are, and what their passions are. As they spread their wings and fly away, their focus will be elsewhere and I’ll be left behind. I’m torn between reveling in the moment and looking forward to having more peace, more time, and more food left in the fridge. And less need for something to amuse me in the car on long drives with boring waits while they doing their things and grow more feathers. But before that time of separation arrives, my fledglings are not quite ready for flight, so I’m going to keep providing Mom’s Taxi Service.