Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Moving On

It's been three years since our eldest son moved into his own apartment. His small bedroom at the end of the upstairs hallway has sat empty since. Though we've been told as in a Steven King novel that "sometimes they come back", Wendy and I decided it was time to update the space.

Down came the football curtains. Down came the highway road signs that read "Speed Limit 45" and "No Parking." Boxed up were souvenirs from his teenaged and young twenty years: a Sega portable game system, some CDs apparently not on his listening list anymore, a bowling pin, a soccer trophy, etc. Greg did take his University of Michigan flag with him to his new apartment, classic decor always being en vogue.

We took out the desk where he spent many a long night doing homework (yeah, riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight). And we put in a bookcase I bought at Wal-Mart. With no kids at home presently, we need space for more books and other reading material. We have time now. I commented to Wendy that this is the first summer in a quarter century we'll be without kids, grown or ungrown. Our youngest son Scott is staying at East Lansing as he has an internship there this summer.

While we were working on the spare bedroom, I asked Wendy if we ever had the crib set up there as the room size seemed the perfect size. She said "no", adding that our youngest was about seven years old when we moved in.

"Oh yeah, right." I then remembered one reason we moved into a bigger house was that we'd have more room in case we wanted to add on another family member. But we kept postponing a try for a daughter until it was too late. Well, technically it's not too late but I'm not sure I want to be a father of a teenager when I'm in my 70s.

Time just has a way of slipping through your fingers like that. I remember thinking to myself once many, many years ago that one thing I wanted to do before I was 40 was run with the bulls in Spain. I haven't even made it out of North America yet and I'm going to be 55.

But I did take my first step in that direction. I got my passport this year. Watch out bulls, here I come. I just hope they take my HMO over there.


OpenID justasimplecountrygirl said...

If you wanna run with bulls, we have a few here that'd probably oblige you.

I know what you mean. :o) Spain is a lovely country.

I THOUGHT I'd like to bungee jump, until I saw how high up I'd be--then no go. Extreme heights make me nervous.

7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You want real excitement??? how about runnin in a gus macker 3 on 3 tourny with your nephews?

8:18 PM  
Blogger Kacey said...

Dear Dave and Wendy, It's hard to watch the last chick fly away, but the years between fifty-five and sixty-five or seventy are made for having fun. You are right back to your early twenties, without responsibilities that way down the soul. Have fun, go places, enjoy each other --- DO Not run with the bulls! They have really pointy horns and are very heavy if they fall on you --- also, you are not as fast as you used to be. Go snorkle in Australia, climb a mountain in Switzerland, visit a vinyard in California (or even along Lake Erie in dratted Ohio) or come on down to Ft. Myers and let the white sand get in your pants. But, you have to be back in time for the birth of the grandkids that are inevitable.

10:42 AM  
Blogger Kacey said...

Excuse me---I meant weigh down the soul! Duh!

11:01 AM  
Blogger simply me said...

While one is breathing and still walking it is never too late for many things. I can't imagine cleaning out Jon's room when he moves out.
I had always wanted at least 3 boys but time got away from me....I still can (I guess) but I also can't imagine have teens again. My mom had me at 45 Which is what I am now...she was a lot more daring than I or just plain dumb. I was a horrible teen.
All of the stages of our life are like a whole new beginning....sit back or Run and enjoy!!

2:56 PM  
Blogger Fred said...

Seems like many of us are dealing with the "kids moving out" emotions.

Once the football curtains came down, that was a sure sign that you definitely knew he wouldn't be back.

Save them, just in case.

4:28 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

DEB--Bungee-jumping is way down my to-do list also, just ahead of sky diving.

ANONYMOUS--I'm still having nightmares about the last three-on-three competition (soccer) I played in two years ago. My dream is that I'm in some athletic team competition and everybody around me is moving in real-time while I'm in slow motion. It's like a sloth playing football with a bunch of cheetahs.

KACEY--My Discover Ohio travel planner just arrived in the mail this week. We're thinking of visiting Amish country down there.

SIMPLY ME--My younger brother has three boys. It reminds me of something I think I heard once--two is not enough and three is too many.

FRED--Those curtains aren't Detroit Lions curtains, so they're probably worth keeping. The Lions ain't.

6:23 PM  
Blogger Carine said...

ooh-just you and Wendy?! Okay, I rather like having my son and his girlfriend hang around. But then again, I'd love to run w/ the bulls (wouldn't that be a sight from a woman who hasn't been able to walk straight in a year and a half?)and run around in the buff after her hubby. Is that TMI or what Dave?

7:05 PM  
Blogger Betty said...

The idea of packing up an adult child's bedroom is unspeakably sad to me. I'll probably never be able to do it.

I'm glad for your reminder that time slips away. This morning my son started vomiting before I headed off to work, and I thought, "This mothering job is way too much for me." I had to go to work because the organization I work for is shutting down on June 1 and I am savoring my last days of employment.

I can't let unemployment ruin my precious time with my son. Someday his room will be empty.


10:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Time most certainly has a way of slipping away from us!
So I really hope you'll follow your dream and run with those bulls.
But maybe being just a spectator might be a bit safer at this stage of the game.

8:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Daves Dad here.Hej Dave!
We are back from the north.Gee Dave, Ill have to tell you about the time I ran with the bull, only it was away from the bull, and that is no bull.

2:36 PM  
Anonymous cassie-b said...

Don't let those bulls get you.

And I hope you get to do that soon.


10:31 AM  
Blogger Babette said...

Happy upcoming Double Nickels, Dave!

Thanks for the Mother's Day greeting. It is my husband's 55th birthday today. 3/11 of our children left home today. One for Missoula, Montana, one for Alaska, and one for Finland.

We will be parents of teenagers in our 60's. What's the problem? I learned to do my first yoga headstand when I was 53. I'm working on a freestanding handstand before I turn 55.

Maybe you can visit Scott in beautiful East Lansing as a special present to yourself. The grass is always GREENer there, you know.

5:54 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

CARINE--Despite the absence of our kids, my wife doesn't chase me around in the buff. Afterall, the kids are nearby and could drop in in an instant.

BETTY--Once your kids are grown and out on their own, you feel a certain sense of pride packing their things away. It makes you feel like you've done your job as a parent. So it's not so sad.

TERRI--Yeah, watching would be fun too. I just want to get out and see the world some day. But I like adventure and the unknown too.

DAD--Yeah, I remember the story about you and the bull. I think my bro from So Dakota has some stories he could tell too.

CASSIE--Thanks. Wendy still has to get her passport first though.

5:57 PM  
Blogger Kacey said...

Oh Dave! I just read your answer to our comments and you mentioned Amish country. Be sure to check our "The Inn at Honey Run" in Millersburg. My oldest daughter and I are planning to go for a couple of nights in late July. Don't plan on being there on Sunday --- they roll up the sidewalks on Saturday night (just like Toldo) and nothing is open on Sunday. The most amazing part of Holmes County is going out into the country at dusk, stopping the car and listening to absolutely nothing. The Amish farmers are bringing in the big draft horses and the children are playing volleyball, while mom is weeding her flowers. The feeling of peace just falls all over you. My daughter is a teacher and she skulks around taking pictures of school houses and their interiors, so she can show her class. I love the Amish!

7:47 AM  
Blogger Lucy Stern said...

Come on Dave, you are NOT going to run with the bulls....I know what it feels like to be 55, I was that age 3 years ago..

So, did you turn the room into a library? You might put a futon bed up there in case you have company. We have Bonnie home right now while she goes back to school. When she was gone, there were times when I didn't go upstairs for a month. I would go up there to change the temperature on he thermostat. Now, Bonnie has the whole upstairs to herself. I really don't mind having her home, she is paying her way through college and this is a way to help.

Forget those bulls Dave....You could go to Italy and see the vatican..

4:46 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

BABETTE--I guess as long as your teenagers behave, it's okay to have them around when you're in your 60s. But be honest, they don't always behave, do they.

KACEY--Thanks for the suggestion. Looks like we're going to take it. If you know of a good Amish restaurant in Holmes County there, let me know that too.

LUCY--So my friend is right. Sometimes they do come back.

9:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


10:32 PM  

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