Kate in the Middle: Time Does Fly

Writer  /  Kate Rhoten

The other day, I was catching up with a close friend over the phone. During our conversation, we were discussing when we would be able to get together for a long weekend. After a few minutes, the conversation took a turn toward other topics.

I have known this friend almost as long as I have known my husband. Actually, I would not know her if it hadn’t been for my husband. I met her when we traveled to New Orleans for her wedding in 1994. At the time, I was dating my husband, and she was his good friend from college that was getting married.

That weekend was the first time my husband met her fiancé, and it was the first time I met both of them. It has been a great friendship over the years.

It’s funny when you think about the time that has passed since you met someone. We have all had children, became godparents to each other’s first-born child and vacationed together. When they lived in Switzerland for over three years, we planned a trip to meet them in Berlin, Germany, for several days and then back to their place to finish the trip.

Even though we are not consistent in our check-ins, we seem to pick up as if it was just a couple of weeks ago that we chatted. We talk about what we have been doing and what the kids are up to, and we are mindful of the busyness in each other’s lives.

Because of this relationship, it seems so easy. However, this particular day, my friend reminded me of how quickly the kids are growing up. While we were chatting, I mentioned something about each of my boys and said something to the effect of the oldest is finishing his sophomore year.

Her response was genuine. It was one of those reality checks of how old my oldest son really is and what that means. Her verbal response was something along the lines of, “Holy crap, he’s going to be a junior.”

That’s when I really started thinking about how age, whether it is yours or your child’s, can sneak up on you and how time can slip by. It makes me thankful that I have had wonderful opportunities to work part-time in recent years. This afforded me the opportunity to get to know my sons better due to my availability to spend more time with each of them.

While I worked part-time at the high school, I drove the oldest to high school at least three times a week. That gave us 10-15 minutes of drive time to talk when he wanted to or listen to music. Now I drive my youngest to school most mornings on my way to my full-time job.

These are opportunities to spend a few uninterrupted minutes with them. They may just be short snippets of time, but they add up. Just like attending the long high school track meets and driving my son home, so we get another significant period to be together.

Time is precious, and I really enjoy the time in the car with the boys or just hanging out at home with them. It’s only a handful of years before they both will be out of the home finding their own way.

Take time and enjoy the craziness because before you know it, there won’t be any more craziness in your life. I know I am enjoying it, and I am not ready for it to end.

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