Summer. It’s bittersweet. On the one hand, I’m practically dancing in the kitchen — still in my pajamas at 9 a.m. and serving ice cream cones for breakfast — because no school bells are oppressing my family schedule this time of year and we are free, free, free.
At the same time, summer means we turned another corner, you know? First grade into second grade; fourth grade into fifth. FIFTH grade — when did I suddenly become the parent of a prepubescent tween? Weren’t my kiddos just toddling around the living room in Pull-ups, smearing popsicle juice across their chins?
Well, okay, they still do that popsicle thing, but still. My babies are growing up. Each year seems to fly faster than the one before. And I just wish I could suspend time, only for a little while, and soak up my children before it’s too late. Before they’re driving off to college or boarding a honeymoon cruise.
Last week I chatted with a friend, the mom of a newly minted high school graduate.
“So where is Abby headed next?” I asked.
“The National Guard,” my friend smiled. “She leaves in August.”
I’m telling you, my heart lurched into my throat.
“Oh my goodness,” I pouted, “your momma soul must be aching!”
“Oh no,” she shook her head. “This is who she is. This is who we raised her to be. Kids reach a point where they need to move on. You wouldn’t want them living in your basement when they’re 30, would you?”
The truth is, maybe I would. If it meant I got to see them, be with them, protect them.
Yet, of course, I know — that misses the whole point of parenting.
“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10).