To my boys on the first day of school,
I celebrated your first day of school this morning. I brought a cooler with sparkling apple-grape cider, and plastic champagne glasses to school today. I was poppin’ bottles, and had toasts with some of my mom-friends in the elementary school hallway. Your dad commented to several parents, about how excited I was for school to start this year.
I have been.
I want you to know that I love you, and have enjoyed our summer vacation. I made a conscientious decision over the summer to take a break from my writing to spend more time with you making memories. I want you to look back on your childhood, specifically, this past summer, as one of the best ones ever. For me, it’s been the best summer ever.
We’ve spent quality time together.
Nearly three months making memories.
We’ve visited amusement parks, national parks, and a water park. We’ve spent time at the ocean and the lake. We’ve read books, and listened to them together on our long car trips together. We’ve had picnics, picked huckleberries, blackberries and pears. We’ve shared meals on picnics, outdoors, and with extended family members at reunions.
After I dropped you off today, I went for a walk with some friends to a coffee shop for conversation. I came home, started dinner, swept the floor and folded some laundry. Then, I started to cry, because our house was so quiet, and I miss you already,
even though, it’s only been a couple of hours since I last saw you,
even though, I always complain about not being able to hear myself think,
even though, I’ve been looking forward to this transition for over nine years,
even though, I had sparkling cider to celebrate.
I started crying, because I know in less than a decade, three of you will be gone, with the fourth quickly following.
And all of those women, I didn’t believe, who’ve told me for years that I would miss the chaotic days of you being small were right.
I was so excited for school to start today, because with the youngest boy beginning first grade, it will be the first time in 9 years that I have spent a lot of my day focused mostly on myself. Even though, I have most of my days to focus on my own interests now, I’ve realized it’s impossible to do that without thinking about you, and what I can do to help you.
My 29th fear is that I’m afraid of losing myself and my identity. I did not want to become a mother who based her worth and value solely upon the accomplishments of her children.
It has been difficult for me to be identified as “The Triplet Mom” or “The Mom with All Boys”. At times, I have felt invisible, inadequate and unappreciated in my role as a mother.
I have been afraid of being consumed with the weight of my responsibilities and tasks. I have feared being a mother would be all I was known for, rather than other accomplishments that I’ve made, or may make in the future.
Boys, if all I’m ever known for, is being your mom, that is the greatest accomplishment I will ever have.
Being your mother is the most important way that I spend my time.
Genealogy Jen’s Challenge of the Week: What’s your favorite childhood summer memory? Why?
Beautiful and so very true
Here! Here! I was in the therapists office today, trying to learn how to focus on me for a change. My doctor says the hardest part of seniors retiring is wondering what to do with themselves now that they have the time. My eldest is 50, my youngest 34 and I still worry about them and wonder where my place in their lives is. Lovely as they are, they are still going in directions I never imagined them doing so. Some good and some in places I’d rather not see them at, so I worry. I know I have to accept and let go… and let them find their way… and make their own mistakes and yes, they are still making some. Parenting is never easy. So, you pose the question, who am I and what dreams do I still want to fulfill? It’s never too late.
So true!Those transition times can be difficult. My mom still worries about my brother and I a lot more than I think she should. The longer I am a parent, the more I understand why she does though. I agree it’s never to late to follow your dream.
I really liked this. People are always telling me I’ll miss this and I’ll miss that, and they’re all lying, because I never do, and so in that way, I don’t relate. I’m glad they’re at school and not here driving me crazy, but there are mornings I just want to stay snuggled with them…that sweet silence…
Every milestone is a bittersweet one.
I strive to not live for my children either. It’s truly difficult to put such an importance on being a great mom and not letting motherhood take over every fiber of our being. Your last line is wonderful. It’s a truth I can shout about.
Thanks Joey! I agree it’s so hard to not let motherhood take over every fiber of our being. I am secretly planning to kidnap them from school sometime for one on one time. My mom did that once in middle school, and I loved it. She picked me up in the middle of the day, took me shopping at the mall, and out for lunch, just because.
What a truly beautiful post, so touching, rich, and true! The words, “Boys, if all I’m ever known for, is being your mom, that is the greatest accomplishment I will ever have. Being your mother is the most important way that I spend my time” were a wonderful way to conclude such a full piece of writing. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you for reading, and the wonderful compliment!
That quote made me cry a little. I have two toddler boys that I wish would just calm down, but the thought of them actually growing up makes me so sad. On one hand I’m so proud of them, but on the other I miss when they were small enough to cuddle all the time…
It can be challenging for sure. When my boys were toddlers. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. I was always running to try to catch up. Thankfully, as they’ve gotten older, I’ve learned to keep up with them a little bit better. I’m trying to savor the times they want to snuggle or hold my hand. I know that it won’t last forever. Sometimes, I sneak into their room to watch them sleep to remember how still and peaceful they can be since they’re constantly on the go. Hang in there. Thanks for reading and commenting.