The other night I realized I only have my kids home with me until August 19th. Then, they're off to school, including my baby who starts kindergarten in the fall.
I always thought I'd be just fine when Sam started school full time, and I think eventually I will be but the thought of not having them here with me during the day doesn't make me leap for joy. It actually makes me really sad.
That's not to say there aren't days I want to pawn them off for a few hours. There definitely are, but last night, while I sat on my screened in porch reading the last bits of Becky Wade's Undeniably Yours, (highly recommend), my attention was drawn to the happy sounds of my boys, splashing and shouting their way around our really unimpressive swimming pool.
I'm not a particularly sentimental person so these moments often escape me. I don't take time to sit and watch my kids. More often than not, I'm shuttling them around through the day, the sound of my internal clock ticking like two erasers being clapped together in rhythm.
What is it about that darn clock? And when will I ever learn to relax?
I clicked through these photos of the kids, my own as well as my nieces and nephews (sans two) looking for one my mom could hang on her wall. She wanted a nice photograph of her grandkids.
I'm honestly not sure whether or not we got a nice photograph, but we did get a lot of happy ones. These, when the kids started making inappropriate armpit noises and cracking up on my parents back hill, are my favorite of the bunch.
They are sheer joy.
I want to live like that. I seem to reserve laughter, storing it up like a conspiracy theorist preparing for a nuclear war.
Why do I do that? Why can't I let go? Laugh with the same reckless abandon that children do? More importantly, how do I ensure that my own kids don't lose their ability to do so?
As summer begins to wane, I'm going to give in a little more to the joy that sometimes bubbles inside, the joy I push down or am afraid to feel. I'm going to set my work aside more often to watch my kids as they play and splash and scream and drip water in puddles all over my kitchen floor.
And while I do think we ended up with a nice photograph...
I've decided that this is the one I'm going to frame: