Our poor Jack has been living quite a few of those moments that his mom wants to remember for the rest of her life.
Those moments I want to hold onto.
Those moments I want to tuck into that special “mom” spot of my heart and mind.
Those moments I know I will look back on with a smile and perhaps the tug of nostalgia in the future.
So as these moments are happening – I strive to remember to be fully present. I try to be really there. To put aside the distractions. To pay attention. To watch. To listen. To take it ALL in. To linger in the moment. To be mindful that I/we are living a moment that will soon become a memory. To be aware that whatever is happening is going to matter to me in the future.
And to be thankful. I am trying so hard to remember to be thankful for these moments. And to express this gratitude. To tell both my loved ones and our God – “thank you.” Thank you for sharing this wild – wonderful – and often weird journey through life with me. (And yes – I do know I am the one bringing the weird! I am always the one who brings the weird. My family very graciously accepts this.)
Jack is incredibly patient with his quirky – eccentric mom and her mindful – grateful – memory making. Jack understands my need to hug him a bit longer – to look deeply into his eyes – to thank him for allowing me the honor and privilege of being his mom. Jack is more than just a guy with great hair. Jack is kind and gracious and considerate.
Which is good – because these past months have been filled with so many moments – so very many of those moments I have needed to linger over and to take pictures of in my mind. (I have a rule. This rule is a firm rule. If the use of an actual camera will mess up the moment – I skip it. NO CAMERA. I just take a picture in my mind. I refuse to miss a moment of life’s good stuff – because I was looking at my phone or messing with my camera.)
There have been many moments this year . . .
Jack plans to be a veterinarian so landing a job at the Jefferson Animal Hospital and Regional Emergency Center last summer was a pretty big deal. It is the perfect place for him to begin learning the ropes.
The first day of his senior year of high school. (Wasn’t it – 15 minutes ago he was starting kindergarten at Saint B.’s in Wabash, IN wearing a backpack that was almost as big as he was . . . ?!?!?!?!)
Followed by college acceptance letters.
Even more exciting – an awesome scholarship to Morehead State University (his absolute – hands down – favorite – first choice – university). I truly hope I will always remember the look of pure joy mixed with a fair bit of shock on Jack’s face when he announced he had received Morehead State’s Honors Scholarship. I cried . . . Seriously – tears of joy and pride ran down my face.
Getting his first car.
Getting his driver’s license.
His first car accident (NOT HIS FAULT – BTW). I didn’t want to remember this one (or even have this memory) – but it is burned into my memory with laser accuracy. That memory is NOT going anywhere.
And this weekend – going to senior prom.
I loved helping Jack get ready for his special night with Caitlyn.
I am a “guy-mom.” There was no all-day hair and make-up at our house. No hairspray. No glittery anything. No mani-pedi appointments. This is good – because I do not speak that language any more than I speak Coptic or Gaelic. The prom prep was delightfully minimal (just my style and well within my comfort zone).
The suspender alignment was all Jack wanted/needed a consult on – but it was nice to be asked. Really – Really – REALLY nice to be asked. As Jack stood in front of me looking so adult – so tall – so handsome – I thought – this is a memory. Jack and I are living a beautiful memory.
Then I just took a moment . . . I lingered . . . I took a moment to be thankful . . .
And then we were off. Off to Broadrun Park for prom pictures. Well – actually we were off to Broadrun for a photo shoot. When Jason and I went to prom together 3 million years ago a few pictures were snapped before we hurried out the door. Jack and Caitlyn had an actual photo shoot with their own adoring entourages and photographers!
Jack and Caitlyn looked so very beautiful in their coordinating pink. They also looked COLD! So – so – SO very – Very – VERY cold!
Spring fled Kentucky this week and winter returned with a vengeance.
It was crazy – cold out there on Saturday – but Jack and Caitlyn bravely endured. They smiled while enduring the early stages of frostbite! Their teeth chattered. They got goose bumps on top of their goose bumps. Their lips started to turn blue. But they bravely smiled for their moms and their dads and their brothers! (I told you they had their own entourages . . .)
And we made memories. And we laughed. And we lingered as much as we dared!
And then Jack and Caitlyn were off. Off into the world to be beautiful and young and happy . . .
And Jason and Will and I went to the playground where Will immediately made new friends (wow is that kid extroverted) and Jason and I walked.
And I made another memory – because walking with Jason and watching our littlest son play – well those moments are sweet and glorious too!