I have a very clear memory of being at the neighborhood pool with my children (then six and three) and noticing a woman reading a book. I looked at her with both amazement and longing. First, I couldn’t believe that she could focus on her book given all the noise. And second, I wondered if she were child-free why she would pick that location to read. Turns out she wasn’t child-free, her daughter, who appeared to be a teenager, was there as well. As I lugged all of our pool toys and warned my daughter to stop running, I thought about how nice it would be to sit at the pool without having to worry about a child drowning. Seemed like it would be forever before I had what that woman had–a bit of freedom, the opportunity to just be.
I have written about how sad I was that my daughter was going to be away all summer. Now it is time for me to acknowledge the other side of things. Today, I found a new happy place:
Yes, I spent a few hours by myself sitting by the pool. I didn’t have to watch anyone. I didn’t have to drive anyone anywhere. And best of all, I listened to the Love & Rockets station on Pandora and no one asked me to turn it off, or worse yet, to stop singing.
They do grow up fast. Sometimes that bums me out, but sometimes, on days like today, I find it is a good thing.