Last weekend my sisters and I descended upon our hometown for a party to celebrate our parents. Between Memorial Day and Labor Day my parents will experience a plethora of milestones; each just turned 60, my mom retired from teaching, in August they’ll become grandparents in addition to celebrating 40 years of marriage. It’s quite the summer.
My parents were high school sweethearts. They still live near the city they grew up, and spend time regularly with friends they’ve known since as early as elementary school. I think about all of the phases and changes they’ve gone through in life and marvel at the fact that their marriage is strong and happy. That they raised 3 wonderfully different, vibrant girls. I’m excited for everything they have to look forward to in this new chapter of their lives.
I have a tendancy to look ahead of myself rather than focus on the particular phase of life I’m in. In order to gain some perspective of where I actually am right now I started thinking about everything my parents have gone through together to get where they are.
Married without Children. Marrying young was typical at the time, but my parents waited a while to have kids as my dad completed the education necessary to become a psychologist.
Time for babies. My oldest and youngest sister are about 7 years apart. I’m about smack dab in the middle of them. Both my parents were very involved in our everyday lives. I don’t remember them ever missing a concert, recital, performance or game. When my mom started teaching, my dad got us girls off in the morning. Mom was home when we got back from school. I’m certain at times there were struggles I am unaware of, but we never wanted for anything. I had a very lucky, happy childhood.
Empty Nest. Now they’ve spent nearly 10 years with all their kids grown and scattered across the country. I can only imagine the adjustments to their relationship this drastic change brought on. They’ve learned to be a party of two again.
And now. Retirement for my mom (which will provide more freedom for both), a grandson on the way. Infinite possibilities.
It makes me realize how little of my life is yet to be lived.