I stood on the sidewalk between two worlds.
I waved my Bigs goodbye as my Littles waited at home, playing. This is the point of my life now, two worlds within our own little family life. And it hurts, and it is difficult, and it is exciting.
This year I have been home with our youngest son. A few weeks ago, his kindergarten-age brother was home with us due to an appointment. Bearded Husband waited at home with the two youngest while I walked the oldest two up the street to school.
The seven-year-old immediately put his hand in mine, while the nine-year-old was somewhat surprised when I took his hand. “It’s not often I get to walk with just you two,” I said as way of explanation. And I miss it.
“You don’t have to walk us all the way, we’ll can do it ourselves,” said my firstborn and his brother nodded in agreement. It’s not far, this walk to school, but that day the distance across the field felt like a portal. It was the path leading to independence, self-reliance, and growing up. A world apart from me.
I was glad, and proud, and I was sad. I miss you.
I miss your little hand grabbing mine. I miss you needing me to help you with your zipper. I miss you running and jumping up to squeeze me around my neck.
I need to savor this time while they’re on the cusp of growing up, becoming too big to hold my hand.
I returned home, opened the front door and immediately was transported into a different world. A world of of booster seats, endless games of Candyland, and snuggling on the couch with a picture book. Piggyback rides, and play doh, and bubbles.
I love that the Bigs start the coffee in the morning for me. I love when they empty the dishwasher without being asked. I love when they offer to push the youngest on the swings. Their sense of humour and the running jokes we’ve developed – I love it. I love the young men they are becoming
But I miss it.
I miss their small hands and the smell of baby shampoo. I miss the days when they could fit on my lap. But they are getting older. And so I will let go, but in increments.
That day, the day they decided to walk on their own, I stood on the sidewalk until they reached the school yard, waving every time they turned to check if I was still there. And I was, waving to my boys who were far enough away that they couldn’t see the tears in my eyes.
Tears because I miss it, but I love who they are becoming.
It hurts, and it is difficult, but it is exciting, always exciting.