This afternoon as I was driving toward the school to pick up a carload of middle school kids, I realized that it’s May and that soon and very soon it will be June which will bring Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year.
And then it’s all downhill from there.
My baby boy is a junior in high school and in a blink (and a year), he will be graduating. For so long, we’ve just been circling around in the same routine but before we know it, some in our circle will exit the orbit and move away from us. From me.
Right now, I feel disbelief at the ending of an era. In other words, I am embracing denial. I am stacking denial up in blocks and hiding behind it. We will continue in our routines. I will pad around the house as usual, turn off the lights in empty rooms and wake up the next day to rinse and repeat. And I will cook dinner, over and over and over again, in the cursed Groundhog Day kind of way.
In the meantime, Summer Solstice approaches. The countdown to summer break is in the weeks, not months. The Big One is coming, that quake which will shake us all up and break us apart and scatter us around. But not too soon. I’m not quite ready.
(Then there is the other part of me that dreams of an empty nest, who fantasizes about being alone within these walls, uninterrupted as I putter and sort and organize and clean and finally get around to watching the television series I missed because I had kids to put to bed at 8 PM for so many years. I am not so nostalgic that I don’t want them to ever go–just GO–but change is always unsettling. And I’m not sentimental much at all. But to think of my baby boy leaving my house for the thrill of college and the beauty of the big wide world? I miss him even though he’s just upstairs right now, sleeping.)
In the words of Maurice Sendak, “Oh please don’t go–we’ll eat you up–we love you so!”