I wish I had listened when people told me to remember these days. They were speaking of the days when my son, Joshua, was little. And I did remember quite a lot; I have the scrapbooks and an entire room devoted to the production thereof as proof.
There was a time when I just wanted a few more moments of sleep, to eat my meal while it was still hot, or to sit down and read a book or watch a movie in the silence and peace I used to enjoy prior to a child. As recently as yesterday when I sent Joshua to the school on his mountain bike to pick up his work permit so I could shower in preparation for taking him for a haircut so he’d look great for the picture on his temps then down to the BMV to get said temps then running home to make lunch before hubby left for work then cleaning up and staying put so Joshua could finish mowing for his dad and using the time to write a thank you note, put in laundry, and type up a synopsis for my current WIP then rushing off to buy pants for the job he started today, I thought to myself how much I want my life back!
Prior to that was all the running to obtain a birth certificate for the job and temps and work permit (I told him to have this stuff finished before school let out for the summer) as well as the three days it took him to get himself in gear to do everything listed above (I’m trying to be a hands-off parent as he matures). There’s a DVD of Persuasion on my countertop begging to be watched, a book to be finished, and don’t even get me started on how I haven’t written anything toward my current WIP or my blog pretty much since school ended.
This summer has been crazy. And really, I’m not complaining, but I wish I people who had said remember these days had also warned me that although children become more independent as they get older, in many new ways they are still quite dependent. What I used to do for Joshua was contained to our little world, our home. Now I’m pretty sure I’m trekking across America several times a week getting, taking, and doing for this kid.
My joyous internal screams were probably felt as shock waves in most of Ohio when Joshua told me he had job orientation from eight to three on Thursday and Friday. What? I’ll have two whole days to write and read? Thank, Adonai; truly You are merciful.
Josh woke me at seven thirty to take him to work (Recall, he only has his temps since yesterday, and tonight will be the first night of driving lessons). I asked all the motherly questions from did you take your allergy pill and brush your teeth to do you have your ID badge and lunch packed? My questions were greeted with one-syllable, monotone affirmations.
I drove him to work and stopped a little way from the front doors so as not to embarrass him. And then I watched my baby walk away. And I wanted to jump out of the car and convince him to come home with me where I’d make him all his favorite foods, and we’d watch all his favorite shows, and then go to Kame’s to look at hunting gear, and visit Sweet Frog for yogurt, and if he was still hungry (which teen boys always are) we’d go for burgers or pizza.
Yes, this summer has been crazy. I’ve hardly written at all since May. When I pulled into the garage after dropping off Josh, I looked beside me and saw his lunch on the drink holders where he’d forgotten it. I’ll be taking that to him around noon. If I’m lucky, tonight after his driving lesson, we’ll go for a drive with me at the wheel. It’s a habit we started in the evenings as the sun is going down. We just pick a direction and drive until it gets dark or we’re tired. Josh and I talk about everything during these drives, and the other day he told me how much he enjoys them. I don’t believe he realizes that as I drive he places his hand lightly over mine where it rests.
I know things will calm down once school starts at the end of August. My routine will be restored, and my writing will flourish. For now I’ll set it aside because I wouldn’t trade publication with the best publishing house in the world or my book selling millions of copies and being made into a movie for the moments I’m collecting and turning into memories.