"Do you feel old mom?" He asked as we walked through the front door. "Do you feel old?" It echoed as I moved down the hall, throwing my purse on the bed. "Old is a relative term. I feel as if I'm moving on to something new, another part of my life." Because that is, indeed, how it feels.
Dylan graduated with six hundred and fifty other kids tonight. Ray joined us for dinner at Murray's beforehand. The boys talked, gave each other grief and behaved like, well, siblings. They are funny that way. They talk in a short-hand sometimes which parents, or I, do not understand. They talked and while we were eating and enjoying ourselves, Chuck was driving to Troy with his dad to get a truck from his grandparents. His car has gone kaput, crapped out.
Two years ago it was Chuck walking across that stage. Last year it was Ray. Next year? Next year it will be someone else's turn, but none of my children. As we left the Mizzou arena there were, milling around, a number of other parents. Parents recognizable from childhood, from their childhoods and time felt like an accordian, whffft! the accordian was extended, then bing! compressed, as all the memories ran through my head and were gone in a second.
With everyone else we negotiated our way through the crowds, picked our way around the new plantings outside the arena, crossed the grassy area then onto the road. It was dark. Above us the sky was clear and full of stars. We walked down the hill to a nearly empty parking lot (everyone else had parked up at the top of the hill). We negotiated our way into the traffic of south Providence. Another night, and time goes by.
"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." Dr. Suess