There are days like today when I ache to see my kids. I'm not sure what it is - partly a mixture of Mother's Love and Mother's Guilt. The sun is shining, the sneezing has almost subsided, and it's warm enough to run around without a coat on.
I know they are having fun at "school" as we call it - when in fact it's daycare. They had story time this morning, ran around the playground, did some arts and craps (again, their translation on an innocent word), and then rested after lunch. But since they are there, that means I can't give them a squeeze when I want or have them run into my office to let me know that the blackbird (a.k.a. Robin) is trying to build a nest again in our patio umbrella. Their teachers take great care of them, and it's only a few days a week, but I still miss them today.
And as I met a friend for lunch, I began to think of those Moms who have had to begin to truly cut the cord already. This particular girlfriend has a son graduating high school in 12 days. He's decided to join the ROTC for a full scholarship to college in the fall. She's terrified and proud of him all at the same time. She's only a few years old than me, but a world away when it comes to these things. We laugh and have a lot in common, but I am teary thinking of my first born starting full-time kindergarten in Sept, let alone leaving the nest to venture out into that amazing, confusing world. We also have a local soldier, Alex Jimenez, who has been missing in Iraq for 366 days. I know this because our local paper has had a count going since the day he disappeared to support his family who lives in the next town over. There is no word on his condition or his location but they pray and hold vigils for his safe return.
So, while I especially miss my kids today, I know where they are right now and I will be scooping them up in an hour to head back home where we'll argue, laugh, cuddle, cry, and hold each other to say good night. When I see Alex Jimenez's picture in the paper with the number 366 under it, or think of my girlfriend who smiled bravely when I asked where her son decided to go for college, I ache for them today, too. And I remember that time flies by, things can change in an instant and the love we have for our kids is more powerful than anything you could ever imagine.