Poem: Moving Day

This poem was written last week.

Today is moving day for our oldest son
and I am awash with memories,
alternating wildly
between remembering
to pack the air fryer,
sharing excitement
about upcoming art classes,
and bursting into tears
when I realize that last night
was the last time
I’ll ever read aloud to all my kids
in this family configuration
that has shaped so many of my days.
When I was his age,
I remember,
I was already married
and had finished one degree.
This is what I want for my kids,
to grow into adulthood
loved and strong
and then set forth
to make their own way.
“But he was our tiny baby,”
I say to my husband
feeling choked and desperate,
wild-eyed and frantic
as I make hummingbird food,
add toothpaste to the list,
and look at the box of clothes
ready by the door.
“We held him and read to him
and patted his back
in his little sleepers.”
I can’t keep listing the things
so I let the hot tears roll down my face
and make my tea.
Feeling my shallow breath,
I consciously attune myself
to the present.
Today we will look for chanterelles
one more time before he leaves.
We will find a Mexican restaurant
in his new town
and go out to dinner.
Life will continue to unfurl
as it has for these last twenty years together.
I will read to three kids instead of four.
A pattern will emerge.
There is no tiny baby.
There is a tall boy become man,
still blue-eyed and smiling,
still my first beloved son.
Tears are normal
and so is change.

3 thoughts

  1. Oh, my gosh. Giant, giant hugs.

    There are so many “goodbyes” and “last times” and “I never saw this coming” moments in motherhood.

    Our six-year-old doesn’t want me to do his “night night” blessing any more. I also now need to ask permission before hugging or touching him, and NO hugs and NO touches is preferred. Sigh.

    Again, hugs to you. I’ll be thinking about you in the coming days.

      1. Awwww, thanks for the update. I’m glad to hear you’re doing all right! Enjoy this weekend. Hugs, C.

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