Monday, September 15, 2014

So Grown Up, Yet Still Growing


It seems summer has almost disappeared (way too early!), and the plight of both Narnia and Arendelle await us…always winter, eternally frozen. Or so it will seem by January.

But the seasons aren’t the only things coming and going.

Around here, we’re racing past some monumental milestones. We’ve endured the long haul from diapers to deodorant. But wasn’t it just last month I had a pile of baby blue laundry—sleepers smelling of spit-up and a hundred tiny mismatched socks? This month, the baby blue load has been replaced with a load of blaze orange and camo in all sizes.

Just about the time I wish for time to slow down, I’m reminded it’s passing at the usual pace.

One minute at a time.

For example, my oldest passed me up in height this year. I’m now the third tallest in our family, soon to be the last, I suppose. He’s made a graceful start to middle school and shows inklings of maturity more often than he used to.

He’s so grown up! I thought as I drove him to a middle school activity.

“Mom, watch,” he said, interrupting my nostalgia.

I took my eyes off the road to witness him blowing big spit-bubbles and smiling proudly as they popped and splattered on his lips.

“Gross.”

And he smiled as if he’d accomplished his goal.

Not too grown up yet, I guess.

After just three days of school, we contracted a variety of germs which landed us in the doctor’s office this week. A new policy requires the nurses to ask each patient whether they’ve experienced abuse or neglect.

I understand why, but it saddened me that the question had to be asked and that it brought up issues kids shouldn’t have to be concerned about. Well, they’re growing up. I told myself. They need to be aware of these things.

The nurse left the room and my middle son said, “I don’t even know what abuse and neglect are, so I just said no.”

Never missing a chance to point out he knows something his brothers don’t, my youngest said, “You don’t even know what abuse is?!...It’s when you’re really overweight.”

“Um, that’s obese,” I corrected and realized again we’re not quite as grown up as I thought.

It seems we’re in a delightful and funny stage of life. Getting all grown up but still growing.

·        Learning to clean fish with an electric knife, then dissecting every internal organ to see what’s inside.

·        Popping a wheelie, yet still needing TLC after a crash.

·        Outfitted with all the football gear, yet unable to get it all on by themselves.

Grown up, but still growing.

I guess it’s really not a stage at all. It’s a perpetual state.

For Kurt and me, one of us has just crested the Big Black Hill, and the other has the summit in sight. But the fact that it’s called “mid-life” indicates there’s the possibility to live another lifetime.

I guess we’re supposed to be grown up, but we’re still growing too. And we’re looking forward to the next milestones as they pass by.

One minute at a time.

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