It’s The End of the World As We Know It…
But the end of a summer flown by too fast leaves this song in my head. Each day, often in ways small and unnoticed, it’s the end of the world as we know it. It’s only in retrospect that we see it, accept it.
This was not the summer I envisioned. For one, I never imagined it would go by with lightning speed.
I did not expect to say goodbye to two beloved animals, my parents’ dog Cookie and our Ibit.
I did not expect to add a quickly adored Little Dude. My mother got fish. We got a kitten that looks almost exactly like Ibit.
I did not expect colleague’s losses, like a friend who lost her husband, or a coworker whose mother died. I did not expect to lose a colleague and family friend and still find myself shaking my head in disbelief that Jackie is gone and how different it will be this fall semester to not have her there.
I did not expect (although we were planning it) Bobby’s beginning Meals on Wheels twice a week and how well it would go, how happy he would be, and that he would leave the day center behind this summer after eight years of it being foundational in our lives. But he’ll begin volunteering five days a week when the school year begins.
I did not expect to go to Philadelphia for a conference or how it would change so much for me, both in the real world and here in the online world, but I did and it did, and I’m good with that.
I did not expect to plan a fundraising event that’s about arming parents and students with the tools to feel optimistic about the upcoming school year. It’s this Wednesday, and my fingers are crossed that it will be a success: that people will show up, have a good time, make some connections, and leave feeling better about the upcoming school year.
I did not expect that when this summer began, my girls and I would get out and about as much as we did, that we would go bowling, make and solidify friendships, that there would be sleepovers where there were 5 happy girls in the house, having a blast.
I did not expect that I would start at hospice this summer, although volunteering there has been a goal for a long time, but I made the call, I did the training, and of all the things I have done in my life outside of my role as mother, this means the most to me, personally.
I did not expect much of what happened this summer. I made plans, I had goals, and in many ways, we did what we set out to do: to learn and grow. We just did it in ways that were unanticipated.
It was not an uneventful summer. It was not a problem-free, summer, either. There’s no happy endings, no magic cures. Issues we still have in abundance. Worries are still there. Concerns still crowd my mind.
But, even when it’s the end of the world as we know it (and it is, every singe day), I feel fine. See, I don’t think feeling fine actually means feeling happy. I think it means whatever we feel is fine: it’s the end of the world as we know it, we’ll process it emotionally, and if we are adaptive copers, we’ll be fine. Sad, maybe. Humbled, mostly. Different, changed by the experience. But we’ll be fine.