We are in transition right now. Not a move between countries or a new job, or the complete change of all our friendships that we go through every two years. That will start next week after we get our next assignment! No, this time it’s a normal one.
We’re watching our kids run around trick or treating and getting excited about costumes, and as we share a beer with the other parents and talk about our kids, we realize that all four of us are getting older. Our kids are not the “little ones” anymore.
And unlike the other parents who are joking about zombies and Michael Jackson, we keep to ourselves that we were actually alive to remember when “Thriller” came out.
Mike and I feel like we’re on a cusp, where we’re young enough to think we’re Young but old enough to know better. Are we on our way to Wise now? The boys talk about the dream house we’ll have one day, we watch movies and go on bike rides, we go out to dinner. Jake and Eli help me make cupcakes. We are in a place where as people and as parents, we want to stay. We still have so much to look forward to, don’t we?
Yet lately we’ve been feeling kind of in the dumps. Is it getting older? Not knowing where we’ll be living a year from now? Having diarrhea too often? No internet for 3 weeks? Maybe a little of all these things?
In times like these I turn to baking. Last week it was Reese’s cup cookies, Halloween cupcakes, a birthday cake for Ms. Hilda, and Rolo Spiders. I couldn’t find any Oreos but Jake and Eli were okay with that. As if we need more sweets with all this candy lying around!
But Mommy needs something more than starbursts and skittles. And doing this stuff is fun!
In some ways the boys’ Halloween memories will be just like the ones from home. Bobbing for apples. Sour patch kids. The Spooky Station.
A hot African day with flaming red trees.
In other ways, clearly not.
Do kids still bob for apples in the U.S.? There was a brief discussion about hygiene and whether bobbing for apples is more fun or more gross, but everyone decided it was more fun. And with wet heads and huge smiles from ear to ear, both Eli and Jake proudly told me they ate 2 apples during the party. I would call that game a success!
I would call these a success too. Thank you Mimi! They were a hit!!!
We spoil Jake and Eli now much more than we used to. Maybe it’s because they’re boys and we know we won’t have them forever. Is that why this transition seems hard?
They’re only mine for as long as they need me. I expect that as they grow older and grow new roots and new loves, that their lives will evolve without thoughts of looking back. My time with them is only brief. I’m hoping, though, that even when they don’t need to me to make them lunch or help with costumes, they’ll feel like they always need us to love them. And that they’ll always come back home for cupcakes.