It is often, really very often, said that youth is wasted on the young. That high school or college are the best days of your life. I don’t know if that is true. If it is, it is horrifyingly depressing. You mean to tell me the best days are already passed? Mama used to tell me as I was chasing two active toddler boys that were 19 months apart that I better enjoy it because these were the days that were the best, the days I would miss the most. At the time this infuriated me. Less so now. I do miss the days of my chubby baby boys, but I don’t want to go back. I do get her point though. We knew less then and had been through less. Life was just ramping up in those days. It was easier because we didn’t have as much responsibility. Yes we had a house and the little lives I mentioned to care for. Jim had a job. What in the world did I do with my time? I couldn’t tell you, except it had something to do with a playgroup or My Gym or practice of some sort.
Now the boys are older, and we have more of them. Four sons in the Trotter house, currently aged 10-19. Very different seasons of life represented. One trying to navigate technically being an adult, one getting ready to leave the nest, one trying to figure out high school, and one obsessed with legos.
Naively I thought that when the oldest went to college it would be a one down three to go scenario. That is a LIE, by the way. They leave, but they don’t really go. Isn’t that supposed to make me happy? What kind of mother does it make me if I just want them to go and do their own life? Don’t get me wrong, I adore my boys. I would die for them. I think they are the most amazing and interesting people on the earth. They can do great things.
But I am worn out.
I don’t think we talk about this phase of parenting enough. I’m caught in the middle of enjoy it while it lasts and hurry up and fly out of this nest. But even if they leave, I’m not done. A parent is a parent forever. These days more and more children find their way back home for a myriad of different reasons. Debt, jobs, childcare, etc, etc. Close family ties are awesome. I want us to be involved in all their lives, but when do I not have to be in charge? I guess that’s it isn’t it? I’m glad to wash clothes and go to games and matches and cook. I love to feed my boys. But I need more of a supporting role than a starring one.
I’m frazzled today. Can’t you tell? I just want to not worry all the time about every single one of my babies. Someone tell me when that will happen. It doesn’t happen, does it?