We were at the pool. Just the boys and me. I was reading the Kellerman thriller and they were swimming. And then it hit me.
Two of my babies are leaving tomorrow for 2 weeks. I won’t see them, talk to them, hug them, or even yell at them for 2 whole weeks.
I remember (secretly) making fun of a great friend of mine when she’d get sad about her kids away. I thought, “I would KILL for a week alone in my house,” but maybe my perspective was skewed by having preschoolers. Maybe? Ha!
Of course it was skewed. As I get older and experience more, I realize that it is impossible to put yourself in someone’s shoes.
Sure, you might know how you’d react in certain situations. But you can’t know – really know – what it is to send your oldest to college until you do. Or what it feels like when you child does something amazing or even when it’s like to say goodbye for 2 weeks. Unless you have.
You might have an idea.
But you don’t know.
At least I didn’t.
If you don’t know me well or haven’t known me long (or don’t even really know me at all), you surely don’t know that I never wanted kids.
I was always career-driven. Even as a kid, I was ambitious. And as I grew into a teenager and beyond, I decided that kids were – well? Inconvenient.
So shoot me.
But one day, I woke up and knew I had to have children. It wasn’t until just before I married Andrew. I don’t know what happened. It was odd. I seriously had no idea what having children entailed. All I knew was how to make it happen.
And we had our first in June ’95, another in June ’97, and yet another in November ’98.
Nothing like making up for lost time. And no one better ever say I don’t set my mind to doing something right. Three in less that three & a half years.
And I liked it. Actually, I loved it. And I was a good mom. (Even my mother was a little surprised how well I took to a job I hadn’t previously coveted.)
The thing about being a mom is that it never stops. Not for a second. Not when they’re in school or sleeping or at a friend’s house or out riding a bike. But most of the time – at least when they’re still young-ish – they’ll be back with me soon.
But now I have to wait two weeks. I know they’ll be having a blast. Doing stupid boy stuff. Playing sports. Eating a ton. Hanging out.
And you’ll find me online at the camp website looking for happy pictures of them posted. (How did our parents live without online photos of us?)