Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

I Think I’ll Miss This Summer

As September looms, I think about this summer and all that it’s held for me. My little boy turned six, and had his first-ever birthday party with friends. I attended BlogU, BlogHer and two writing retreats. Our family took a trip to Dollywood to celebrate Tucker’s birthday, and each week, went to the waterpark, a sunny field to play, or to a movie. One week, I even gave into my son’s request for a mohawk.

As September looms, I think about this summer and realize that this, and every summer, we say goodbye to an us that we’ll never be again.

While the smell of Fall and school supplies feels like a crisp start each year, and reminds me of my childhood and of growing up in an tethered-to-the-wall phone era before smartphones were imagined, the end of summer also makes me sad. I don’t like goodbyes, and don’t feel ready to say goodbye to this summer.

I’ve seen Facebook statuses about how annoyed some people get when parents feel tearful at the approach of preschool, kindergarten, high school, and college. I see those statuses and wonder why people are annoyed by that. Isn’t each joyful moment that we’ll never get back also full of sadness and nostalgia? I’ve written before about how I want to remember the moments. I’ll probably write again about wanting to hold them to the light so that they burn forever-images on my memory.

Hey Summer, I

 

I already miss this summer. I just booked a trip for us to visit Florida’s Legoland and the beach for October because I miss this summer. I miss all of the summers. Each marks a moment in time that will be repeated forever by mothers and people everywhere, but each also marks a moment gone.

Never again will I live the moment when I freak out about abandoned nap-times. I’ll never wake up each morning wondering whether today will be the day that my son says “Mommy” for the first time. I’ll never buy baby shoes for my growing little boy again. We’ll never again get through his first day of preschool together, but separately. Him, in class. Me, in the parking lot unable to leave for the tears and the worry.  

I no longer wonder whether my son will ever speak, and learn to not lash out. I wish then-me knew what I know today. I wish I’d known that there will be times to come when I will breathe deeply against the endless stream of “WHY?” and questions like “Where is a bird’s butt crack?” and “Why would fish die in soap?” Of course, I’m jumping for joy that my little boy now asks these things — that he even thinks of them.

Where is a birds butt crack is one kid question from today - FindingNinee.com

 

Sometimes, like now, as summer ends, I also remember the three-year-ago-beauty found in days spent on the front porch even though those were ones that I prepared for preschool by writing a list of Tucker’s words, trying to make sure that they knew, when I wasn’t there to interpret, that “AH” means water and “HAH” means helicopter.

Tonight, I lie in his bed, singing the same songs that I’ve sung since his birth.  His breathing deepens, and I squeeze his skinny arm. My thoughts drift to summers past and summers future and I know that one day, somebody other than I may run her hands along my son’s arm, admiring muscle and shapes that do not yet exist.

As September looms, I think about this summer and I feel sad that it’s gone. That all past summers are. And yet, I also feel happy, (mostly) relaxed, and know that every summer will have milestones, kisses from the sun, and memories that I mourn even as they just occurred.

As September looms, I think about this summer and realize that this, and every summer, each of us says goodbye to an us that we’ll never be again. We also shyly look up at the next chapter, blush a little, look to the future summers and introduce ourselves, knowing that we have lived. That we live a little bit more, every day, whether they’re forgotten or important. 

kristi rieger campbell finished post for finding ninee

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post, where writers and bloggers gather together to share their versions of a completed sentence. This week’s prompt was “”What I’ll miss about summer…”
Hosts:
hosted by:
Me – Kristi Rieger Campbell (findingninee.com),
Lisa Moskowitz Sadikman (flingome.com) – this week’s sentence thinker-upper, and
Allison McGrath Smith (thelatchkeymom.com/)

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  • JT Walters - Even though I have been crippled with a broken leg, this was the Summer my son really became a full grown man. At the beginning of the Summer he still listened to me and loved me but now I am just the final enforcer.

    It saddeneds me to say my son will never talk but gets his point across. He is now struggling for his independence and autonomy.

    Where he use to love babies, he wants Mommies to care for their children.

    I will miss the last glimpse of my boy who has become an adolescent/teenager/anti-authority renegade.August 27, 2015 – 10:28 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Awe man, the growing up is just dang hard isn’t it? SO SO hard. I love that he wants moms to care for their children. You’ve raised a noble son for sure.August 28, 2015 – 11:25 pmReplyCancel

  • Mimi - Loved this Kristi! You capture the essence of summer and all the emotions that run through it. I’m hoping to hook up. This is a great prompt! xoAugust 28, 2015 – 12:53 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Mimi, I so hope you’ll link up!!! This prompt is one that originally was like “hm” for me but then, once I thought about it, was so perfect. So full of a million possibilities. xo youAugust 28, 2015 – 11:27 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Beautiful way to look at it and I can happily say I most certainly lived and enjoyed so much this summer, too. So if nothing else I have some great memories to get me through now, as wellAugust 28, 2015 – 2:16 amReplyCancel

  • Ruchira Khanna - oh boy! this was such a beautiful blog…I got emotional on the part when you holding Tucker’s skinny arm and imagining that some day…

    I am glad you had a wonderful summer, and i remember watching Tucker’s mohawk pix…it was awesome!
    His b’day celebrations were special too, and I wish him celebrations every year 🙂

    I agree Kristi…time ought to fly or else how will we make memories and treasure our present.
    xoxoAugust 28, 2015 – 3:03 amReplyCancel

  • Alison Wilkinson - I love this – so heartfelt and echoes exactly how I feel about this summer. It’s hard to say goodbye to these times. Despite the frustration and the worry, there is beauty in these moments.August 28, 2015 – 3:41 amReplyCancel

  • Allie - I hate good-byes, too. Especially to childhood phases and seasons (except winter – I’m always happy to say so long then:)). I will miss this summer so very much. We’ve had some cool, teasing mornings this weekend, and I was not excited. It coming too fast.August 28, 2015 – 7:04 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I’m a dork and even miss winter’s passing. Although that’s less true here in DC than it was when I lived in Colorado. Winter in Colorado is amazing. Everybody thinks it’s brutal but it’s less brutal than here. The sun is out almost all of the time and it’s DRY cold so less cold, and the snow crunches under your feet. Also, skiing. But yeah, I’m so going to miss summer.August 28, 2015 – 11:29 pmReplyCancel

  • Katy @ Experienced Bad Mom - So true – “each of us says goodbye to an us that we’ll never be again.” *Sigh!*August 28, 2015 – 7:40 amReplyCancel

  • Emily - “Where is a bird’s butt-crack?” That is just awesome – period.August 28, 2015 – 8:03 amReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth - How smart of you to make the loss of summer easier by planning fun things in autumn!August 28, 2015 – 9:43 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I hope so!!! The whole booking thing started sketchy but hopefully we’ve got it sorted by now!August 28, 2015 – 11:39 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ Golden Spoons - I swear this summer went by SO FAST! I feel like we had just gotten settled in a started making pans when it was time to start thinking about back to school already. I’m usually not that emotional about the end of summer – neither happy to send the kids back to school or extremely sad about it. This week, though, I was unexpectedly teary when I dropped them off on the first day. My oldest started her last year of middle school and the two youngest started at a new school after last year being so hellacious at the old one. We will never have this summer back again and I fell like I just didn’t get enough this time. ::Sigh::August 28, 2015 – 12:31 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I feel like it went by so fast too, Lisa! Like super duper crazy fast. Sigh. I’m glad though that you got the two youngest into a school better for them. Hopefully. It’s all so dang scary though. And sad! Because pretty soon, we’re going to be planning their weddings right? Gah.August 28, 2015 – 11:46 pmReplyCancel

  • Michele @ A Storybook Life - It sounds like it has been a wonderful and memorable summer, bird butt cracks and all! I love the idea of planning your Florida trip to keep the summer feeling going a little longer. 🙂August 28, 2015 – 1:52 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, Michele! I so want to keep the summer going. I’m sad about FIRST GRADE ALREADY. Gah.August 28, 2015 – 11:56 pmReplyCancel

  • Tamara - Just beautiful. I already miss it too, and it’s not gone yet.
    It was shorter than usual for us, because we had 4,000 snow days last year, but I’m wondering if it could only have felt short – for all the fun it contained.
    Sob.
    Stop growing up so fast, kids. I still want to buy baby shoes.August 28, 2015 – 3:10 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I so miss it. We had 4,000 snow days too but we did the year before as well and so they adjusted the schedule this year. Tucker didn’t get out until end of June. Still it feels too dang short. Sob is right.August 28, 2015 – 11:58 pmReplyCancel

  • Susan Cook - Hi saw this on my blogging friend Tamara’s blog and decided to join for first time. added my link. I guess that’s true every Summer we say goodbye to memories, but we can make new ones too 🙂August 28, 2015 – 5:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Lizzi Rogers - Beautiful, and I love the looks to the future. Your September will have some alright stuff in it tho 😉August 28, 2015 – 9:32 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa Moskowitz Sadikman - You so exactly put your finger on it with this Kristi: “Isn’t each joyful moment that we’ll never get back also full of sadness and nostalgia?” That mix of gladness and sorrow is always present at the end of summer/beginning of fall for me as well. I love the memories of Tucker going to preschool and you writing down his words and then the now Tucker who asks about birds’ butt cracks – awesome! xoAugust 29, 2015 – 4:08 amReplyCancel

  • Sandra - I love your kid! Where is a bird’s butt crack? ‘Cause really, where is it? Right? I love September and the fall, and when kids start school. And it’s not because I get the kidlets out of the house, but it’s because it reminds me of that great feeling of getting to start fresh in a new grade with new friends. This was beautifully written once again, and your love for your son moves me beyond words.August 29, 2015 – 6:28 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I love him too!! LOL and yeah, right? WHERE IS IT??? I do love September and the Fall but I’m so going to miss this summer. It’s the aging I think. And thank you so much for your kind words – they mean a lot to me.August 30, 2015 – 12:45 amReplyCancel

  • Dana - I’m missing summer right along with you, Kristi. I can’t believe people get annoyed about parents being tearful…what a waste of time to be annoyed by that. Life’s too short, people.

    I love the questions that Tucker asks you – I think that the questions asked are a better measure of intelligence than the answers given. (But I did love your answer to the bird butt crack question!)August 29, 2015 – 9:56 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - People who get annoyed are buttholes really. And I love the questions that Tucker has too!! You’re so right about the questions meaning more than the answers! I mean what do you SAY really about “where is a bird’s buttcrack?”August 30, 2015 – 12:46 amReplyCancel

  • Vidya Sury - I feel this way about summers, especially now when my boy is away at college for five years. It feels like I am wallowing in memories as I walk around our house, our area and feel the absence of his presence. And of course I cherish the memory of each moment from the moment he was born. That keeps me smiling through the tears. Hugs, Kristi. Don’t they seem to grow up too soon, sometimes? ♥

    I am admiring the “watermark” on your photos from your header. So sweet.August 29, 2015 – 12:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Nicki - So adore your perspective in this Kristi!

    “And every summer, we say goodbye to an us that we’ll never be again.” Sad and achy, but also good as we continue to move forward and “live a little bit more, every day…” <3August 29, 2015 – 7:00 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw Nix. Thank you. It’s so true right? I mean sad and happy and sad and achy but yes to the moving forward. A little bit. Every day.August 30, 2015 – 12:47 amReplyCancel

  • Patricia Elaine Brockett - What a beautiful post! A great reflection of not only the summer but the growth of your son and your mothering moments with him.August 30, 2015 – 6:24 amReplyCancel

  • Denise Farley - See? This is why I will always come back. I love your writing 🙂August 30, 2015 – 2:11 pmReplyCancel

  • Erin Johnston - Oh, this made me cry – probably should not have read it right after we moved Zach back to college – so true and so well said… love the imagery of holding the memories to the light to burn them into forever memories – so great.August 30, 2015 – 9:46 pmReplyCancel

  • Angel the Alien - Weird that people would get annoyed about parents being nervous or teary about their children’s transition! It is a huge thing… if you have children in your life you realize that they are constantly cchanging into new versions of themselves… the baby you knew last year is not the toddler you know this year or the preschooler you’ll know a few years from now. I think the teariness is reasonable, because you really are saying goodbye to something. Yes, it is good to move forward… but still… it is always hard to say goodbye.August 31, 2015 – 8:48 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - It’s so weird, Angel, because you’re right — we need to remember as parents (and as PEOPLE) that people change and grow but also that it’s sad because we’re saying goodbye to the people we knew before, right? Thank you so much for getting it. For saying that teariness is reasonable. Hard to say goodbye always.August 31, 2015 – 11:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Organ - I am so sad to see this summer end too! This is the first time when I’m not even a little bit excited for fall. Usually about this time of the year, I get excited for school and football and cool nights. Not this year. I want more pool days and flip-flops and lazy mornings.August 31, 2015 – 10:14 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I’m so glad that you feel the same way! I usually love fall, and I am sure (or hope to be sure) that I will this year as well but I’m just NOT as ready as usual!!! Pools. Flip-flops. Lazy. That. Sigh.September 1, 2015 – 1:10 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - So beautiful. I love T.’s questions – so funny. Zilla asks similar things and it drives me batshit crazy, but isn’t part of why we love them so damn much? I can’t imagine NOT answering questions like that. Or trying to, anyway. 😀August 31, 2015 – 10:33 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I love T’s questions too Lisa! And you’re spot on with driving us batshit crazy (because OMG the “WHY???” argh!) But yeah, I can’t imagine not answering them either and their questions give us so much insight into them!!September 1, 2015 – 1:12 amReplyCancel

  • Pam Moore - I always feel a little melancholy at the end of summer, too. Two writing retreats and two conferences!? I am jealous. That sounds amazing. Also: Where IS a bird’s butt crack? That is priceless. So glad you wrote it down. Here’s to a crisp, fresh fall and whatever adventures lie ahead!September 3, 2015 – 1:27 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - The reflection of summers. There are so many things that have been the “last time” but I also really enjoy watching Christopher grow up and I just loved his independence this summer. Even though I was not excited to see the summer end so quickly, and fall means football, homework etc – I love it more!

    I happened to be eating a bagel with cream cheese while I also wondered, “Where IS a birds butt crack?”September 3, 2015 – 10:07 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Sigh to all of the last times, Kenya! Huge. I’m happy to read about you enjoying watching Christopher grow up because I’m missing Baby Tucker so much right now. Ugh to football and homework. T wants to play football too (which I think I’ve said before) but I’m hoping he goes for soccer or a gentler sport. Also HAHAHA to him and “gentle sports” — really.
      And right??? Where IS a bird’s butt crack?September 3, 2015 – 11:28 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily Nichols Grossi - This is really lovely, Kristi! I wish I felt more like you do! xoSeptember 3, 2015 – 10:41 pmReplyCancel

  • Roshni AaMom - I didn’t make it in time to link up but I definitely did want to write the post, so I did! I so agree with you – “Isn’t each joyful moment that we’ll never get back also full of sadness and nostalgia”September 3, 2015 – 10:51 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - I love this line: We say goodbye to an us that we’ll never be again.

    Again, you are so right. No matter how hard we try, we will never be the same as soon as that second passes. There are many moments in life that I tell myself, hold on to this moment. Hold on tight. And yet many, many, many moments later, I have trouble remembering exactly how that moment felt. You seem to do so much better with this than I do and I love getting a glimpse into Kristi.

    As you already know and acknowledge, yes, this summer is going and you are already missing it, but there are many more summers to look forward to. And you will embrace them with the same energy that you embraced this last one. And that is what I love about you and your words.September 3, 2015 – 11:46 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Linda, your comments are always so wonderful and amazing and it’s like you know what I mean between the lines. It’s so true that we’ll never be the same and I also feel like sometimes, I forget the moments. There are a few though, that I keep. I think it’s a symptom of not becoming a mom until I was 40, and I’d already miscarried, met all of my friends’ kids, and have less patience than I used to for sure. So maybe it’s partly guilt-driven — that I know I’d have been more fun for Tucker if I were 10 years younger when I had him. Anyway, there are those moments now when I feel like I need to breathe them and hold them. Thanks also for the reminder that I’ll cherish the upcoming ones just as much.September 4, 2015 – 9:05 pmReplyCancel

  • Jamie Ohmer - I appreciate that you talk about taking the time to enjoy the here and now. The concerns of the past were valid then but serve no purpose in our memory. I’m in the middle of the “wondering years” with my daughter. She is non-verbal and I have to admit fear that she will never speak overcomes me at times. It’s good to see it from the perspective of another mother who shared my same concerns.September 6, 2015 – 12:59 amReplyCancel

  • Meredith Ethington - Love this! I always love the approach of fall so much, but am like you and always sad to see the freedom of summer end. There are twice as many memories made during those short months and it’s hard to say good bye.September 7, 2015 – 1:57 pmReplyCancel

  • Christine Carter - This is just so beautiful… oh, how I love the way you write. It fills me with a sense of awe over all of this life, and our place in it. You inspire me to truly embrace and treasure every single moment… before it passes. And celebrate every moment to come too…September 9, 2015 – 2:56 pmReplyCancel

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