Zeb returned yesterday from his trip to Las Vegas to visit friends and family.
I didn’t really expect myself to be jumping up and down quite so giddily. But I was pretty excited to see him (with knots in my stomach and everything).
Big giant smiles for all of us, big giant hugs, lots of talking.
The weird part?
He grows several inches since he’s been gone…AND HE CAME HOME TALLER THAN ME.
I’m suddenly the shortie in the family. I knew it was coming eventually. I didn’t quite expect it at 12 years old.
It makes my chest clamp and my eyes water in that bittersweet way that watching your ONCE little boy become a grown man can do to you.
You know how, when your kids are babies and they’re up all night, crying or teething, or they’re toddlers and running circles around you and stepping into their own autonomy and you’re exhausted and working through trigger after trigger as your little spiritual guru is showing you how to grow into the parent they need you to be…and an older mama with grown kids comes along and tells you “It passes so fast; enjoy it while you can. You’ll miss this.” and you just want to flick her in the nose?
Take that moment of Wisdom she is offering you, the kind of Wisdom that can only come from looking at it all in hindsight, and take a deep breath and remind yourself of this:
The days are long, but the years are short.
Hindsight is 20/20.
No amount of flicking her in the nose will change the fact that she is right.
You will NOT miss your exhaustion.
You will NOT miss your triggers, your anger, your impatience, your fighting, your overwhelm.
But you WILL miss the opportunity you had to remain grounded instead of triggered.
You WILL miss the opportunity you had to find a way to enjoy what the moment was offering you.
You WILL miss the things you don’t realize you missed until it’s long gone.
And that’s what those older, wiser, kind mamas are really telling us…
Each moment with them is an opportunity. What we do with that opportunity will determine what we miss or regret or give gratitude for later.