I am somewhere within my summer bucket list; surrounded by a few of my f a v o r I t e “things”; and unable and unwilling to let go of summer anytime quickly. More than once recently, people have commented, “I am sure you will be happy once your children start back to school.” Mind you, there have been certain moments throughout the summer when I would have said of course or thought, I could even drive the bus. But for me, these times have been fleeting. Fleeting is why I have a hard time letting go each summer. To me, summer marks a most precious and ephemeral period of time. It is in its finest moments this summer, 10, 7, and 3 have been beautiful, whole, and timeless. The days are long and the moments are punctuated by earnest and innocent childhood pursuits. In this house, fairies are played; dragons are found and read about; little boys are closer to babyhood than preschool still; and dancing shadows on the walls are both of little girls and the young ladies they are becoming. Yet with all good things, these days will pass. Next summer will find us closer to the teen years; fully into the tween years; and anticipating a certain little boy’s entry into preschool. Rather than think about then, I will relive and revisit now.
In my mind’s eye, I see our oldest learning to dive. I see the moment it clicked during swim lessons and her graceful little self diving over and over again into the water. I see our youngest daughter playing her heart out during soccer, even though she was the smallest and one of the youngest, having moved up this year. I see her gutsy determination and her holding her own a field that seems too large to hold her. I relive a walk with our littlest. I feel his little baby hand reaching for mine and telling me where to find blackberries in the woods. I go back to our delight over the geese that were pausing from their flight and watching us in the field, as we looked for berries. I taste the delicious blackberries and cherish his little caring heart, that warns me to be careful as I walked.
I take a step back and admire my children lost in play. On the nights by the lake, I hear their feet running as they play ghost in the graveyard. I smile as they make friends with the other children there and play bad mitten and other games. I again see our children in the vegetable garden. I see them excited to be such a help to their dad. I can hear our oldest telling us to close our eyes as she surprises us with sweet peas from the garden. I smell the cucumbers our two youngest enjoy and share.
I replay the music of our oldest’s first concert. As I listen, I see us sitting outside on a beautiful night, feeling the energy of a concert crowd and tapping into the pulse of a night, in a way that music and an experience allow when they deliver you. I feel her weight on my lap as she was proud of being able to go to a concert for the first time, but young enough to let me hold her when she was cold.
Yes, these summer days are too short. But perhaps that’s what makes them so longed for and remembered. Right now, I am blissfully lost in remembering….