My last child is swimming in a sea of his lasts which for him is very exciting. I’ve had several years of lasts as my daughter graduated and moved on to college and then my oldest son who followed suit but they were never THE LAST ONE. There was always more in the younger ones. My last one is reveling in his last Raynwater show, his last Boy Scout Meeting, his last everything. For me, as his mom, this is like eating tacks. Every last is like someone is ripping a piece of me out of my soul and leaving me with what feels like a gaping hole. The happy thing is that he’s going to be living at home while he goes to college so I’ll still see him and he’ll still be hanging around in his messy room that sort of makes me smile through my gritted teeth daily. I feel like I’m all alone dreading all these things that were landmarks to me when I did them. My mom never cried as I left or dreaded my graduation or felt sad as I moved on. My mom is not me. Today as I scrolled through Facebook I came across a post of a woman’s hand holding a paper bag and it caught my eye. I read it even thought it didn’t pertain to me because well………….SQUIRREL!
This is what it read:
This probably is just a paper lunch bag to you, to me it’s a bag full of years of memories and moments. This is the last school lunch I’ll ever make for my kids. (Yes, I’m a Greek mother and I loved making my kids lunches. When you work at night for their entire lives it’s the little things like this that I think make a difference) My son graduates next week and my daughter is Junior in College. And so begins this part of life. HOW DID IT GO BY SO FAST???? I look forward to what’s next and am filled with love and gratitude that I got to make a million lunches. Every time I walk by a mother holding her child’s hand I just want to stop them and say stop right there and feel your child’s hand and take in this simple moment. Drink it in because before you know it, you will be making your last school lunch. ❤
BOOM! I don’t remember meeting Maria even though I watch her on TV every day but boy did she hit my nail on the head hard! So to the rest of you reading this who might wonder why the fuck am I freaking out? Well, to you he’s just a kid like many others who go through this all the time. To you, he’s James the funny happy video game playing kid who is loved by all. To me, he’s my last everything. He’s my last child and the end of my daily purpose. There’s no more lunches to make after him. My job is over . Every lunch was made with love even the ones I made for his friends. All the lunches I ever made were made for my kids because I love them, never to save money. I am a creature who needs to be needed. What happens now? Who will need me now that they are off to do their lives that no longer need me to help keep them organized? What happens now that I’m watching all these lasts? When I get to that last lunch what then? When you have spent 22 years buried in your kids lives it becomes the thing you know, the only thing you know and the daily habit that life and the world just expects you to break overnight and get over. What if that thing brings you joy and light to your life and thinking about it going away gives you tremendous anxiety and dread. Well that’s me and that’s where I’m at. I feel like I’m going to disappear. I have no choice but to move on because life doesn’t wait around for you but somewhere deep inside where I don’t share with anyone, I’m sad and I feel like a big piece of swiss cheese full of holes. Oh I’ll take pictures and smile, cry and laugh but it’s over and it’s like a wonderful book, a fairy tale and romance novel and action story all rolled up into one that you could never put down. It was so good and will afford me so many stories to tell forever and ever and yes there will be more to come but not like the ones that are just about over. Your kids are only little for a short time. Enjoy it. Let them spill things and cry and splash in the puddles because it eventually comes to a bittersweet end. Make memories with them, tell them daily that you love them and never forget how much joy they have brought you. I love you Katy, John and James!