I went to a sandwich shop last week and behind me in line was a very sweet older couple. They were probably in their early 80s. It got me thinking about the future and what it would be like to be 80. What will the world be like then? What new inventions will I roll my eyes at or have to have my grandkids teach me about? I also thought about how nice it would be to spend every single day with my husband. To be retired together. To be old together.
I then starting thinking about how when I am that old I will think back to these years. The ones that will be referred to as, “when the boys were young.” This little bit of time I have where my children are little, live at home and I do so much for them. It hit me hard that it won’t always be this way. In just about 11 or 12 years my oldest will be going off to college and probably moving out of our house. In about 15-16 years he could get married and start having his own children. And when that time comes it will seem like this time went by too fast. That it went by in a blink of an eye.
I have always tried not to rush through any stage with my kids but even so, the years pass by. The little baby that made me a mom back in 2004 is going to be eight this year. Even my youngest is a toddler now. It seems odd to think that so many of the parenting firsts we have already experienced.
I want to live in the moment as much as I can because someday it will just be my husband and I at home. Someday we won’t have Legos to pick up, school lunches to make, sibling fights to break up and little clothes to wash. So when I am having a hard kid day I try to remember this. I try to think about how someday I will look back and remember this time and by then it will only be a memory.
But isn’t that so hard sometimes? Isn’t it fun to think about the future? To plan and think about what life will be like when a certain thing happens or when we are a certain age? It really is. It is great to plan. We have to enjoy the present. We have to figure out how to enjoy our present day-to-day. If we don’t, we will just rush through it and before we know it we will be 80 years old, wondering where the time went. Wondering why we spent it wishing on the future.
So when the days feel a little too crazy, when I just can’t think about answering another, “Mommy, I need you…” I try to remember that this moment is my current place in time. The ages my boys are now? That is where I need to be. Enjoying them. Making memories and having fun together. Enjoying the stages as they come. Enjoying the moments because you can blink and you will be on to the next stage.
Do you find yourself rushing through to the next stage? Are you able to take the time to cherish the here and now?