But when a) and b) don't produce one sleepy, brown-eyed John, she instantly leaps to c) which typically goes along the lines of CHECK THE WINDOWS! CHECK THE YARD! SOMEONE STOLE MY KID!
I can think of any number of valid reasons.
Too many horror movies as a teenager.
Mary Higgens Clark Where Are the Children? type pulp fiction as an adult.
If you're in need of a cathartic cry, please read this piece by Ann Voskamp.
So much of motherhood seems eternal -- and I am mean both the good and the dreary. The laundry will never end, but you'll always have a small hand in yours as you cross the street. Sibling squabbles drone on and on and on, but you spend a good chunk of every evening reading books on the couch. Tense words fly over homework and curfews and screen time, but late nights end with tight hugs and early mornings begin with shared coffee.
I find myself on the brink of something.
My oldest is moving toward adulthood. The braces are gone, the SAT has been taken, college looms in the not so very distant future. Meanwhile my youngest is taking us through our last set of firsts.
Our last set of firsts.
She's about to lose her first tooth which will be our last first tooth. I won't have another first day of kindergarten. She already swims, but she doesn't yet ride a bike. Yes, there will be more firsts. But unless a really, really big surprise comes our way, these firsts -- the tooth, the bike -- will be our last firsts.
A part of me breaks when I think about these things.
But another part of me quickly texts my friend to get that nifty box.
Handle with care, reads the top of John's dryer box.
This cardboard and duct tape behemoth is not exactly the decorating statement I had in mind when I envisioned John's new room. But babies don't keep, as the saying goes. John is welcome to sleep in his ever-growing, double-wide fort.
(As long as he keeps his mother apprised of his whereabouts).