August 6, 2012. Our youngest begins his graduate school orientation and training this morning, while our eldest (by a mere 60 seconds) helped us pack up for a wedding destination. His twin will be married by the end of the week. While we make the drive, I have plenty of hours to do some reading for school (coming up so soon!), follow the posts and tweets, and ponder the passage of time. We just stopped at a familiar rest area, one that for years required us to pull in on the far side, trailing our Coleman camper behind us as we made our annual spring break trip to Jacksonville, FL. This time, we’ll be on the Gulf side of the Sunshine State, and instead of campfires and beach walks, we’ll be toasting the bride & groom and wishing them a lifetime of happiness and praying for the Lord’s blessings to rain down on their marriage.
Brad Paisley’s most recent CD includes a song called “Love Starts with a Toothbrush,” a fun little song that highlights the speedy, cyclic nature of love and life. I met the love of my life years and years ago. Married him three years later. Children followed. The years seamlessly flow one to another, punctuated by family trips, Christmas trees, a beloved Labrador Retriever, heated dinner-time conversations, loved ones lost, and an aging face gazing at me from the other side of the mirror.
Our kids are grown. I can’t pretend otherwise. Most days, I wouldn’t even want to. Nothing compares to spending time with our adult children who choose to carve out time for us. Those family vacations – camping, trips to see grandparents, requisite visit to Disney World – have changed their shape. Now, Jeff and I travel alone more often than not, and our destinations, I suspect, will depend on which grown son we haven’t seen for awhile. Even today, the ‘wedding week’ travel is disjointed, as one needs to be oriented, and one works through most the week so that he can honeymoon next week. YIKES. 🙂
Today, only one son journeys with us. We zoom along a crowded I65. Behind the wheel, Luke gives his dad some time in the navigator’s seat, while I watch the world pass by. Summer construction zones remind me that our family is undergoing its own summer alteration. We’re gaining a daughter, Matt’s brothers, a sister. And Matt takes a wife.