Years ago, I heard the saying, "If you want to see eighteen years fly by, have a child." I realized how true this was several weeks ago as I watched my daughter graduate from high school.
The tiny baby of long ago has grown into a lovely young woman who is anxious to take on the world. As I wonder where my little girl went, I am reminded of the lyrics to the song Sunrise, Sunset from the musical Fiddler On The Roof:
Is this the little girl I carried?
Is this the little boy at play?
I don't remember growing older
When did they?
When did she get to be a beauty?
When did he grow to be so tall?
Wasn't it yesterday when they were small?
As both my children enter new phases in life, one off to college and the other entering high school, I realize Cliff and I are also entering new passages in life. As they grow more independent, that Empty Nest Syndrome looms ever closer. As someone who has dedicated the last 18 years of my life to raising my children, there are some aspects in that time to which I look forward. Others, not so much.
If there is anything I have learned during this 18-year journey, it is to cherish every moment, no matter how mundane it seems. Take pictures, journal and scrapbook as much as you can to preserve those precious memories. Pick and choose your battles carefully, and never, ever sweat the small stuff.
After all, the days may seem long when they are little, but the years are incredibly short.