I know. Shocking, eh?
When we were young and dumb, and moved to Wyoming thinking that we could live on love and $18,000 a year with no health insurance, we looked at all the “Old People.” I was always looking at those people with not just kids, but BIG kids. You know, tweens and teenagers, sports and instruments, school and youth group, and all the things that came with being a parent of the older kids. They did not have to have babysitters. Their kids had their own friends. They did not worry about nap times, and they could do things not on a cranky toddler’s schedule.
I looked at them with a certain amount of envy, and thought they were SO much older than me. I was busy have babies and toddlers, and they just seemed like an entirely different stage of parenting than me. They were OLD and boy, did they have it good!
Until very recently, I have still thought of myself (maybe not JP as much …LOL) as the young parent. You know…so what if I was in my thirties, but I have little kids, and I am young… you know… kinda…
Every so often something happens that snaps me to the reality that many years have passed since Donny Paulson used to call me “Sparky.”
Last year, when our interns Tony and Haley came to work I was HORRIFIED that these CHILDREN were old enough to be married and here to live with US! They were just CHILDREN!!!!! Only four years older than my own child and married and on their first missions internship. OH MY WORD!
Well, tonight, it happened again. We attended a wedding rehearsal, and someone decided to let CHILDREN get married! Only three years old than my own child and MARRIED!!!! OH MY WORD!
How many times have I heard myself say lately, “Twenty years ago…” ?
Tonight I had to admit to something that had been at least twenty five years previous! Oi vey!
I have friends that I have known from that long or longer!
I don’t FEEL old! that is the crazy thing. Here I am on the down hill slide to the big 4-0, and I don’t exactly feel old. Sure, things might not be as flexible, resilient, strong, or durable as they were back then, but I am not exactly falling apart!
But then I look around and all these CHILDREN are doing things. Like driving cars! Have you seen how young children are when they drive cars?!?
It is FREAKY!
This kid is like SIX and he can legally drive a vehicle with a responsible adult in it with him!?!?
Kids are getting married at like twelve!
My contemporaries have children graduating and picking colleges or enlisting.
I blinked my eyes, and the years went by. I am the old parent and Sparky is someone new.
Back in those long days that I was so overwhelmed with the exhaustion and continual drain, I remember the sage words of so many mommies who said, “You will soon wonder what happened to these days. ” They were right.
Not that I want an armload of babies anymore, or a toddler clung to my leg for hours a day, but I want to remember that each moment is precious. You do blink and wonder where time has gone.
You think you will remember exactly what it felt like to hold that squishy, wiggling little baby, but the memory does fade and you struggle to imagine every detail that you once took for granted.
I am trying to savor the moments. Even the ones that I make me want to strangle someone, because I am sure I will miss even those. Pretty soon, Someone else will look at my children and wonder how they got so old.