I keep passing by a broken remote controlled helicopter in our living room. It hasn’t worked for years. Still, I’m struggling tossing it out. Part of me believes if I don’t get rid of it, I can slow down time. I won’t have to face reality that seasons change-regardless of my resistance to accept it.
I recall a few weeks back, when my husband and walked away from the last high school sporting event of our oldest son. Watching our kids on the field has become fun-the camaraderie with other parents, watching our boys do their thing-all of it. And now… Thirty minutes earlier we were cheering and squealing from the stands. But at that moment, we walked purposely at a slow pace to the car. As if maybe the team would come back for an encore. Or perhaps, magically more time would be added to the scoreboard.
My husband held my right hand as if he knew I needed to be comforted, but remained quiet. And then this feeling of second guessing came over me. “Did we do okay?” I asked him. “I mean with the kids-did we do enough?” We literally went through a checklist as we walked around the field toward the parking lot.”We sent them to summer camp.” They came home sweaty and dirty-that has to count for something in the hearty category.”They traveled-they have been on a plane” Check the well-rounded box.”They went camping in Wyoming” they can now be mountain men.”But…they never took music lessons,” I lamented. Oh no….Houston, we have a parental fail.”Yeah but they played sports, it was more their thing.” Never mind Houston-all good.They learned how to travel on a city bus. They know how to fish. They took swim lessons. They had all their shots, met with the dentist twice a year and had vision check ups. They’ve had like 14 years of French!!!!!!!
“Did we do enough?” The question kept lingering in my mind. Like where does that list start? Eating broccoli when I was pregnant? Or letting them pick out their own outfits when they were 5? Did they lie on the grass in the backyard and look at the clouds which looked like puffy versions of people, places and animals? Did they play ding dong ditch and kick the can? What about drinking from the garden hose, or making snow angels?
High school graduation is less than 24 hours away and I just hope I did enough. I cannot slow down time. And I have yet to find a way to add more to the clock. But as exhaustion sets in I realize that my job isn’t to “do enough.” My job is to make way for you to do what you need to do.