Our neighborhood goes all out for Halloween. Every year since our kids started trick-or-treating, my friend and I have gathered all six of our boys on one block to tackle the crazy of the night together. Our husbands always trail behind, randomly and ineffectually calling out, ‘Don’t run!’ or ‘Say thank you!’ while we corral ghosts and superheroes, cowboys and Indians from street to street.
This year, our eldest two deemed themselves old enough to set off on their own. Newly minted 7th graders, they gathered in a group of five or six boys and took off with glow sticks and cell phones. Other people have noted feelings of sadness or worry when faced with such milestones of independence, but we thought it was awesome. We joked that when our youngest finally graduated to that golden age of solo trick-or-treating, we’d throw ourselves a big parents-only Halloween party. Which led to doing the math: the year our six-year-olds reached age 13, it would be…2018.
It seems so far away! But here’s where I insert a cliche about how fast time flies: I remember when Toby was born, and in a weak moment of sleep-deprived depression, I spent my car pool pick-up wait time calculating what grade Nate would be in when the baby finally started school. Answer: 6th. Current grade: Kindergarten. I laid my head on the steering wheel and cried.
But here we are. Nate’s flown past 6th, and Toby’s in 1st. Calvin’s…well, Calvin’s the middle child, so who knows what he’s up to? My point is, when Toby reaches 7th, Nate will be…gone. College-aged. And we all know college is a million years away. And yet…tomorrow.
My advice? Party like it’s 2018, because by the time it gets here, you may blink and miss it.