I wrote the following post last Monday, planning to post it Tuesday, unbeknownst that childbirth was in the day's forecast. I sat down to post an update tonight but have decided to post this instead. Mainly because I'm exhausted to the point of delirium (we live thirty-minutes from the hospital and I've been driving back and forth for the last three days because I can't not be with my babies, hello) but also because, with the girls still in the NICU, this post is just as relevant as it was a week ago. Except instead of waiting for my babies to be born, I'm waiting for them to come home.
Last Wednesday was Archer's first day of first grade and our first time as parents packing two lunch boxes and backpacks and seeing off both children together. (Fable started preschool three months ago.) They stood by the door with their backpacks until it was time for us to go.
Hal loaded them into the back seat of the van one by one, seemingly a million miles away from us, two giant empty seats of separation.
"Hello back there!" we waved.
"Hello up there!" they waved back.
We dropped off Archer first, walked him to his room and then waved through the window... so different from Kindergarten when all the parents huddled with their cameras in the back of the class. Dropped Fable off next. Kissed her goodbye.
The house was empty when we got home and when Hal left for work, it was just me at home alone.
Lovely to have quiet, I thought. Quiet, glorious quiet! And then, after a few moments... Quiet! Too quiet! Painfully quiet! Stop the quiet!
Nothing feels more empty than a house at the end of summer when the children have gone off with their backpacks to school.
"Enjoy it while it lasts, Bec, because pretty soon..."
"...An endless summer."