I grabbed a long sleeved shirt from my closet this week. It’s the first time since Winter released her grip on us in late May. I was convinced Summer might not ever arrive. Spring had peeked out at us, but didn’t seem intent on sticking around. The tulips emerged, the trees bloomed, and still I held my breath.
I feared just what happened.
That this Summer, once it brightened our mornings and graced our doorsteps, would be both beautiful and brief.
There are two camps of people: those who’d rather be cold than hot. At this very moment, those people are celebrating…yanking their scarves and boots from the back of their closets in preparation, switching the decor in their homes to reflect the impending Fall months and placing their mental orders for pumpkin spice-everythings.
I am not in this camp. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good pair of boots (and so much of the food that appears this time of year), but ahhhh…I will never get enough of the warmth and everything glorious that accompanies it.
The opposite folks – those like me – will take 102 over 22 every day of the week. No mittens, just flip-flops. No heavy Winter Coats, just a light jacket. No bundling, burrowing or freezing temperatures to avoid.
But more than all of this, more than missing the warmth and long sunshiny days, this particular Summer was special because of my small people. At nine and eleven, they just might be the perfect age for all things fun, family and summertime. Sure, they fought. They are siblings. And there were days I thought my brain might explode from attempting to juggle one too many camps, one too many requests for time with friends, one too many hours of a house filled with neighborhood kids who have a volume dial set permanently on LOUD.
But I miss them.
Every year…and I do mean every single year, I’ve secretly (and sometimes not-so-secretly) celebrated the return to routine, the magic of a quiet house and little minds suddenly occupied with school work rather than begging for more activities.
But not this year.
This year, I miss them.
I’m excited about watching their minds grow, thrilled to bear witness to the students they are and the young adults they are becoming.
But I really like them. And having them around less actually makes me a little melancholy.
This Summer was filled with firsts. And a ton of sports. (of course.)
My small girl went away to Camp – for an entire week. She’s still walking in the clouds from the experience. And I survived her absence.
I didn’t care about the jellyfish (every one of us was stung). I didn’t care that we lost almost an entire day to rain. I *almost* didn’t even care that we couldn’t get in to the ocean. At all. (seriously. the jellyfish.) We watched movies, we played marathon games of Uno, we ate too much food, we dug for seashells, read on the beach, snuggled in bed as the sun came up and watched the ocean in all its glory, and we laughed and laughed and laughed.
You see? I miss them. They are sitting in the magic years….a time when children are old enough to have great conversation, express their own opinions, ask interesting questions, make a sandwich on their own, shower, get dressed and clean their rooms…and yet, they still LOVE their mom and dad. We haven’t hit the invisible wall that suddenly makes parents uncool, boring and decidedly annoying to be around. Instead, we can still rock a photo booth together.
They still hold my hand, love to be hugged, value my opinion and prove over and over again that family is a treasure.
So, you can bet, while I confess to enjoying the silence and the ease of getting my work done uninterrupted, I’m still waiting at the door when they come home from school each day and I DO miss them while they are gone.
I may be alone as I know there are many moms (and dads) relishing this back-to-school time and I’ll embrace it after while, but for now, I’m content to know it is ok to miss them and this Summer of everything.