Monday, March 14, 2016

Kids: Can't Live With 'Em, Can't Live Without 'Em

My kids and I are visiting Erie, PA, this week. My mom and dad were both born and raised in this sprawling town, and I have a lot of family here. Since my dad was in the Army, we moved around a whole lot but always came back here for summers and holidays and, well, whenever we could. Now I return a few times a year to see my two grandfathers, one in his 90s and one in his late 80s, my aunt and two uncles and a whole host of cousins who are once removed or second or something like that--I don't care the details. They're family.

There's nothing like a trip to Erie, PA, to help righten my perspecticles (something I didn't make up; have to credit Glennon Melton of Momastery for that one). The last time I drove away from here I recorded my reflections. Thanks to my handy iPhone notes, I can see that on August 13 2013 these were the things that smacked me in the face during and after our summer visit:

1.  It is worth the energy to stay positive. 
2.  I sure am young and healthy. 
3.  I should have more fun--laugh more with people I love. 
4.  Try to remember that most people have bad a much tougher life than me. 

This time around, with my kids a little older and my youngest just on the cusp of going to school full-time and me pretty excited about that, I'm realizing just how lucky I am to have them to fuss over and worry about. 

My aunt has three kids, and her youngest is off to college in the fall. I can't imagine this. I can't imagine the quiet, the empty house, the lack of laundry, snack, homework, baths, bedtime stories... I know each phase of parenting (and of marriage) is tough and joy-filled for its own reason, so I think I should definitely realize I've got some pretty awesome and difficult years ahead of me where my kids still need me--albeit in a slightly different way. 

Hopefully they'll be able to blow their own noses but still need my guidance on how to deal with heart ache and forgiveness. Hopefully they'll be able to cook a little more for themselves, but still want and need my help in the kitchen.

Appreciating my young kids just a little bit more today...

1 comment:

  1. I love the connection in this piece between what you're experiencing as a mother of young kids and how you relate to the older generation in your life. When my first son was born a few years ago, I think the most important thing anyone said to me was that everything is a phase--and it's so true. Sounds like your time with your family is giving you perspective on some different phases of life. Enjoy your time with them!