I knew this day was coming.
I’ve had 18 years to be prepared.
There were days that I tried to rush time to get to the next stage. I wished away the colicky days. I cursed away the potty training days. Fourth grade was a disaster. More than once I looked forward to “this part” being over thinking the next “part” was going to be so much easier and better.
I put off some hard conversations. I got tired and didn’t have the energy to face that battle so I let it-whatever the it was at the time-slide. I overreacted to many things. I stayed mad a little too often. There were too many days that I was distracted and didn’t read the bedtime story or play that game.
We didn’t drive across country. We didn’t stand on the edge of the Grand Canyon or stand under a redwood tree. I wanted him to climb the rocks at Joshua Tree state park. He hasn’t seen Texas. We’ve never left the US.
But we’ve run out of time.
I want every moment back.
I want to go back and savor those long nights when it was just he and I awake in the wee hours. I’d sing more songs; memorize his little laughs and looks a bit more. I’d sit down in the bathroom floor and play games while waiting on the next potty time. I’d play trucks and build LEGO houses. I’d turn off the tv and go outside to play ball. I’d let HIM teach me to swim. I’d read more bed time stories. Lots more.
I’d give him a phone much later in life. I’d teach him to study more. No…I’d teach him to want to LEARN more. The studying would follow. I’d give him the urge to look a little farther ahead.
We’d go to church sooner in his life. We’d sit at the table and talk more. I’d have those hard conversations. And I’d have them again and again and again until I was sure they were heard. And then I would have them again.
We’d take more spontaneous trips. I’d save more so we could travel more. I’d show him all the wonders of the world so he stayed curious for a world outside of the state line.
I’d make him fish a little more. I’d buy him a few more long sleeved shirts and a pair of dress shoes and find a reason for him to wear them.
I’d help him to cultivate an interest beyond swimming so he was more well rounded. I wouldn’t change a second of his pool time but I’d like to add something else.
I’d ask him to read a little more. Eat a little more vegetables and a little better variety of foods. He doesn’t save enough.
I’d take him to the Grand Canyon. We’d hike trl redwood forest. With the top down and the wind blowing out hair we’d cruise the California coast. We’d buy fruit and vegetables from pike place market and pack a picnic to watch the whales off the Seattle coast. We’d eat lobsters in Maine. Buy boots in Texas.
If only I could turn back time.
Instead the days are going faster and faster and faster and time is racing away.
Saturday his life starts. And our life—the life I built with him–changes. It’s already starting. Soon-he won’t sleep under my roof every night. He won’t have to ask when he wants to go somewhere. He won’t hug me good morning or kiss me goodnight.
He will want to see the world with his friends…though he will probably still want me to pay for it. Dinner won’t be the focal point of the day. No more best part-worst part talks. I won’t know about his days anymore. I won’t know about his friends. He won’t ask an I won’t give him a curfew. He will need me for money, food and tuition but not much else.
I won’t see that crooked little smile much. Won’t hear “mama” as much. Won’t be the center of his world ever again.
Yes, I’ve known this day was coming. But I wasn’t prepared .
How I wish for a few of those moments I passed up on back.
There is a new county song entitled “five more minutes”. It’s perfect. It’s a prefect soundtrack for this moment in life. Five more minutes. I wish I had five more minutes.
https://youtu.be/2dPDBU9MC8c5 more minutes by Scotty Mccreey