Thursday, June 16, 2011


Every summer I have a lot of things I want to get done. Of course, not everything gets completed before the summer ends, but I do accomplish many of my goals. This summer is no different.

I was thinking this evening about everything I wanted to "get to" this summer. Things like learning how to pickle cucumbers, reading certain professional development books, and cleaning out my closet (I still have my Y2K millennium dance party in there from college!)

Emily was sitting beside me as I went through this mental list. So I started talking with her about things she wanted to do this summer. At first she told me about going to VBS, visiting family, and going to the beach. But when I started telling her about the things I wanted to learn this summer, she immediately responded with what she wants to learn. She said she wants to learn how to tie her own shoes (Boy do I hope she's successful with that one!) in addition to learning how to whistle and snap her fingers. She also said that she really wants to lose a tooth.

Whistling, tying shoes, snapping her fingers, and losing teeth. In my mind, these are all rights of passage that come with growing up. Then it occurred to me: She wants to grow up!

I don't know I how I feel about this. On one hand, I remember so many things that signified growing up when I was little. Not things that many of us share like learning to drive a car or staying home by myself for the first time, but specific things that signified "growing up" for me. Things like the "Moving Up" song at RBG. (Talk about building school community!) and getting to go off the high dive at the pool. Others I thought about were not going to children's church during the service, but actually having to sit through the whole sermon. Or getting to ride my bike on the other side of Kranenburg Ave. without my parents watching me cross Nord Rd. Thinking about this made me wonder what specifics will enter Emily's mind as a symbol of growing up. I can't wait to see what those things will be for her.

But on the other hand, I can't believe my little girl wants to GROW UP! How can this happen? I'm frequently reminded how fast time goes, and with each passing month that my twins are not just two, but two and a few months now, I just can't help but wonder how this can be possible. And to think Em will be in the first grade next year makes me second-guess myself and think maybe I miscalculated somehow.

Somebody once explained to me that the older we get, the more years we have in our memory. So each year becomes a smaller percentage of our entirety. For example, for a 6 year old, one year is only 1/6 of their life, or 17% of their life so far. Whereas my birthday next week makes me 31. Making my past year only 3% of my entire life. Doesn't that automatically make a year seem to go by faster and faster?

Maybe this is the reality that I face as I get older. Perception is everything I guess. And it seems to me that my Emily has grown way too fast, and it doesn't seem to be slowing down any time soon. I guess the only thing to do is hold on tight.


Jenny said...

I love what you had to say in this post. Time with our little ones goes way too fast. It seems like no time has passed since Ryan and Emily were babies together.

Tim O'Keefe said...

You got to love summertime. We still work hard, just at other stuff - like preparing for next fall. Emily's comments are so much more than cute. How intelligent and how human that she wants to outgrow her current self. What great goals for a summer at home. We are looking at a similar change in our own two kids, only at a much later age and stage. It's all about growing up. And no matter where you are there is still something better around the bend.

You are right. Hold on tight to these precious days.

Meesh Hays said...

I'm looking at these pictures of four-year-old Beth that were just taken, um, yesterday? Only it was 18 years ago!!

Emily is like Kori - she's been five years old for so long, that when she turned six, it all just started speeding by! Oh, what a joy it is to see who she is becoming! You, too, for that matter, my honorary little sister.