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Too many changes are happening. Most of these changes I have known about. It’s always hard when the time comes.

My friend said goodbye today. I didn’t think it would hurt so much. We haven’t been as close lately. Her oldest is nine months younger than my youngest. Eventually the age gap in our children took a toll. We have been running in different circles not really finding as much time to come together as friends.

She hugged me so tight today to say goodbye. I know how hard this move is on her. We know a lot of things about each other and have been each other’s advocate in so many ways. I didn’t think it would hurt so much to say goodbye but it does. I will really miss her.

What really worries me about her leaving is how she admitted she’s not good at keeping in touch. I have learned those are death words. But then again I have had good friends claim they will stay in touch and they don’t. I have even tried to stay in touch with people but they eventually stop responding. Moving is just a death sentence. This friend means a lot to me. We have seen each other through things that we didn’t always trust to others. I’ll do my best to stay in touch.

She told me that another friend of mine, someone who used to live here, lost her sister to cancer recently. My heart aches for her. What a devastating loss.

Gavin is turning 12 in a week. I’m more excited for him than anything else. It is strange though. Today was his last day in Primary. My baby is growing up.

Parker cannot accept some of the changes happening to his older brother. Gavin is lucky enough to go to Scout camp for a week. He leaves the day after his birthday. Parker got it in his head that Gavin was leaving tomorrow. He has been weird all weekend. One minute he’s picking fights with Gavin and the next he’s near tears hugging Gavin’s legs.

He really had a hard time in Primary today. I don’t know that I have ever seen my boys sit together or acknowledge one another at all in the years they have attended Primary together. I do remember Gavin was so excited to show Parker the way to Primary when Parker graduated from Nursery. Holy cow that was a million years ago!

Today Parker sat behind Gavin and kept poking him and talking to him and bugging him. I should have realized what was happening but it never occurred to me that Parker was struggling with this change. He hates that Gavin won’t be in Primary anymore. And of course there was the added misconception that Gavin would go to camp tomorrow morning!

The deacons cannot wait for Gavin to join them. There are only two deacons so you can imagine how excited they are to welcome Gavin. By the end of August the Primary will lose four boys to the deacon’s quorum. Gavin is the only one lucky enough to go to Scout camp this year. It helps that he turns 12 the day before!

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We spent most of the weekend getting Gavin’s stuff together. Heath bought him a new backpack. The kid could go backpacking through Europe with that thing.

Parker keeps saying he’s jelly. Jelly is short for jealous. He is dying watching Gavin prepare for so much fun. I keep telling him he can do the same thing in two years but it does little to soothe the pain of the here and now.

It’s starting to hit me that Gavin will be gone for a week. And he’s only 12 years old! Although it brings up a lot of memories for Heath and me about our camping trips as youth. I was 10 years old the first time I went away for a week. That was the first time I went to Diabetic Camp. I was so homesick. It didn’t help that I had horrible camp counselors. One mom complained because her daughter was a seasoned camper having been diagnosed at 18 months. Those counselors were severely reprimanded and asked to never come back.

Mostly I remember how much fun it was to go to Diabetic Camp and Girls Camp. Gavin is going to have a blast. He won’t have time to be homesick. Parker, on the other hand, will really struggle to find meaning in life without his brother.

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Look how big that pack is! I thought his school backpack was heavy. I wonder if he will be able to walk with this on his back. If he falls he may be a paralyzed turtle.

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Jelly Parker had to put the pack on himself. He stumbled around a lot until he found his sea legs. Don’t you love how the boys both look like old men on vacation with their black dress socks left over from church? Don’t you love that look of sheer joy on Parker’s face? We have pictures of that same face on his fourth birthday. Lately Parker’s face reminds me of how he looked as a baby and a little boy. He’s growing up but some things never change. For that I am grateful.

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Gwen has to do anything Parker does. She gets jelly of him. In fact she took the day pack and wouldn’t give it to Parker. He chased her around the house with the hello huge backpack on. I was impressed.

Eventually we convinced Gwen to give the day pack to Parker so he could wear it on his chest. She still wanted to get in on all the action. Knowing she would never be able to handle the weight of the real equipment she found her own version.

It will be interesting to have Gavin gone. I’m just glad we have family in town to help fill the time.

There are so many changes right now. At the same time some things never change. On Wednesday we celebrate our 8th anniversary here. Which means that Memorial Day weekend was my 8th blogiversary.

I used to write nearly daily. I still try to but now that my kids aren’t babies anymore it’s harder to come up with interesting stories to tell. It’s also hard to come up with a good blogging time. Gwen claims she never sees me because I’m always blogging! Funny since I miss so many days because inspiration doesn’t hit in a timely manner or I get busy living life.

To catch up, on Thursday I took Gwen visiting teaching with me. My companion was out of town and I needed to go before the sister left for the summer. I don’t normally do this even though I should. I prayed that I would know how to help this sister. She has a tendency to barrage my companion and me with parenting questions. On Thursday she kept saying things like, “I’m so glad you said that. Now I don’t feel so alone.” or “I was just praying about that this morning!” That was a neat experience to realize I was an instrument in the Lord’s hands to bless one of His children.

On Friday we went to a park day playdate to say goodbye to our friends who are leaving. It was a million degrees so it was nice for the kids to play at a splash pad. I’m just glad we were able to find a working splash pad. All the ones here have been shut down. It was recycled water but hey, it was water and the kids had fun.

We also watched McFarland late Friday night. What a great movie. I love those inspiring movies that are based on a true story. I think it inspired Gavin to keep running. I was not inspired to run. I would rather live vicariously through movies. I love that the coach couldn’t run. He rode his daughter’s old beat up bike alongside the boys as they ran. He recognized their talent for running and helped them realize their potential.

About a month or so ago I finished reading The Boys in the Boat. If you want an inspiring true story told well, that is your story. I get goosebumps just thinking about it. That was an amazing story. There are so many good lessons to be learned from it too. Great book.

Yesterday was just clean clean clean clean clean in preparation for changes. Based on the state of my house now you would never know I did anything. The only constant is change.

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