All the standard thoughts apply today.
“How did this happen?”
“How is this even possible that time has marched by so swiftly?”
Let me start with advice to young parents: treasure every moment with your children, because I was once like you thinking high school graduation was light years away.
Now, it’s tomorrow.
I’m so proud of Matt. He’s truly found his way in high school. From being the co-captain of the golf team (County Champs!), to his work as the VP of DECA with his best buddy, Luke, (and a trip to compete in California out of it), to his academic achievements in the Business, Innovation & Leadership program at the high school, he has found his niche and enjoyed his time in high school. He also works a part-time job at a golf center that he’s had for over a year and a half. More than all of that, he has a wonderful group of friends that he’s known since we moved to Severna Park for his 8th grade year. He’s truly worked hard and become a responsible young man.
But, if I’m allowed to get sentimental for just a moment, in the blink of an eye, he will be off to college, and yet, it feels like just yesterday we were dancing to the The Wiggles, setting up obstacle courses in our former front yard in Ellicott City (I will pay respects to what happened in that quaint town last night in a moment), watching him play Little League baseball, attending events at his elementary school, and playing on the beach with our families for 16 years straight in Duck, North Carolina.
I consider myself quite lucky that my husband’s job allowed me to primarily stay at home with the kids while they were little. I always worked a part-time job, and while I was at work, Miss Amy (our friend, Amy), helped raise Matt while I was teaching my adjunct courses at the college. He loved going to Miss Amy’s house—never did he make a fuss about being with other people. It was all he knew, because I first dropped him off at 7 weeks old. Thank you, Miss Amy, for helping me during all those years that I worked (and then to Lauren, her daughter, who pitched in later). And, if he wasn’t at Miss Amy’s house, he was with my parents or my husband’s parents, who always lent a hand when needed. My mother was a trooper and was ready at a moment’s notice. Then, when Matt’s younger sister by two years was in all-day kindergarten, I went back to work as a full-time faculty member at Stevenson University.
Again, quite fortunately, my job has always offered me the opportunity to be around for my kids, it’s just that—and here’s the scary part I’m about to say to working parents—the time goes by even faster when you work. As I sit here typing this blog post, I cannot believe that come August 20, Matt will be in a dorm room in college. I know he’s ready for it, and I am happy for him, but life is going to be different. His sister has even said, “The house is going to be quieter.” I won’t see his friends come in and out of the house like I have over the years. And I’ll walk by his vacant room and probably get that melancholy pang in my heart.
At least we have all summer to prepare for it.
You know I could go on and on and on, but I won’t. I’ll keep it right here as far as these sentiments are concerned. Hug your kids. Give them love. Let them know you love them every single day.
Because sooner than you think, it will be the eve of your child’s high school graduation. And it will feel weird.
The Flood in Ellicott City
Last night, I watched news reports in horror as Ellicott City was devastated by flooding for the second time in two years. For 14 years, we lived 1.5 miles from Historic Ellicott City. It was my former stomping ground. I ate there. I shopped there. I had drinks with family and friends there. I bought all my Christmas gifts from the local shop owners.
There is a romance to that small city.
And now, Ellicott City has flooded beyond compare. It devastated the town two years ago, and it looks as if it has done the same last night. It may even be worse.
My heart goes out to those retailers and restauranteurs who tirelessly rebuilt their businesses down there, pouring every drop of money they had to make it work. And now, the destruction is daunting. I feel for everyone in the area.
I’m so sorry for their loss.