I have experienced many changes in my life over the years. There was my childhood to get through. Then the years of young adulthood, what I like to call the ‘getting my you-know-what together’ period. There was living alone after a break-up, and the learning of a new partner after meeting someone else. The newly married phase, the having children phase, the empty nest phase. The inevitable growing older part (bleh!) that occurred while I wasn’t looking.
There was no rhyme or reason to any of those stages. They just sort of happened. But I have a plan for the rest of my life now. Writing and editing, getting my books published, starting a new business while working a full-time job to make sure the bills get paid on time.
My days are pretty routine. The alarm goes off in darkness every morning. Bleary-eyed, I smack at the phone like it’s an old-fashioned alarm clock. I’m reluctant to get out from under the warm covers, but I force myself toward the shower. Hot water wakes me up. Dry my hair. Put on make-up. Throw on clothes. Find shoes. Start breakfast. Make lunch while it’s cooking. Wake the kids.
Yep, you heard that right. After twelve years without any children at home, I once again find myself doing the mommy dance. My kids were a large part of my growth and change. They contributed freely to the gray that tints ever more numerous strands of my once-dark hair. I think that for the most part, I did a decent job of raising them, but I was extremely thankful when they were all safely launched and on their own. I never expected to relive those mommy years for any reason. And yet, I find myself doing exactly that with two of my grandchildren who have come to live with me for a space.
My plans, at least for now, are out the window. Long gone and flown on the winds of yet another change in my life. I find that I barely have time to breathe and even less to edit. Writing is a dicey proposition that I manage to fit in with stops and starts until I’ve completely lost track of what I was doing. I hope that it is not forever, that my grandchildren are returned to their family life to experience their own growing and changing. In the meantime, I consign the things I love to do to the back of the shelf so that I have more time to help the children I love so fiercely.
And while I had not expected to be raising children again, I find that as the days turn into weeks, it is getting easier to remember the steps of this dance that I once did so effortlessly. That weaving of parental duties among and between the other patterns of my life. The timeless movement that, once learned, one does not forget.