I found myself sitting on a bench, with moms older and younger than myself. Each of us had, at some point, been the one there in the trench with our young children, overseeing face painting, or game playing, or any number of other young kid related activities. Today, however, we were beyond that. Our kids now old enough to fend for themselves, we were no longer obligated, at least in that moment, to race, or chase, or otherwise be in charge of them. So there we were, just sitting. Moms on a bench.
In a moment of energy, I had a pang of guilt mixed with disappointment.
How was it that I was suddenly past all of that? How was it that I was
suddenly content to sit and chat and observe, rather than dive into the
trench of messy food and messier activities? How had I suddenly become a
mom on a bench?
The thing is, we are always moving past one stage or another, whether we
are moms or workers or just people living in the world. We, and our
view, will always be changing. We can perhaps mourn what is lost, as I
found myself doing just a little bit from my spot on the bench, or we
can celebrate what once was, and the fact that we are on that bench
surrounded by the people who make up what now is in our lives.
For a short time, I was a mom on a bench, on the sidelines, while the
kids I helped get to this point were doing their own thing. I was a mom
on a bench, on the sidelines, but surrounded by the teammates I have
come to know while playing this kind of crazy game. I was a mom on a
bench, waiting for my next turn to go in, perhaps storing up my energy,
and knowing that my time to make the next play isn't over. It's just
waiting to come.