This amazing thing happened to me this morning.
It was a gorgeous, crisp, absolutely freezing winter morning. Greg tapped me on the shoulder when it was still dark, and I rolled over in bed and nursed Maeve, who was still sleeping, for about 10 minutes as the purple light crept over the snow covered tree branches outside my window. She was so warm, and I stroked her little soft head as I listened to her contented gulping as she filled her tiny tummy in our warm, soft bed. Then I sneaked out of bed, and down the stairs, toasted myself a bagel and lathered it with honey, poured coffee into a travel mug and got into the car with Liam to drive to...
Yippee!!!!!!!!!!! I am a HOCKEY MOM. I am so excited about this I can hardly even type these words. Suddenly I feel as if I've moved into this whole new realm of being a parent of an older child. Liam has played hockey for a few years, but his program was pretty laid back and they didn't play other teams. This year, he joined a league where part of the play is just scrimmages with each other but on Sundays they go to a city about half an hour away to play other teams. As this made for about a three hour outing, and Maeve wasn't eating much in the way of solids, I had avoided taking the trip for the first 6 weeks. Between Greg and his Dad they pretty much had things under control, I figured. And I even almost looked at it as a chore, I admit, that I'd have to drive him down the highway to the CITY to do this.
I was forgetting what "this" is.
THIS is a super fun sport, and my son is great at it! Watching him play almost made me cry. Bringing him into this huge arena, finding the locker room, helping him into his skates and onto the ice, and then watching him play from real stands just made my heart melt into a puddle on the cold concrete riser. I kept seeing him as a tiny, tow headed toddler boy running after a ball shouting, "Go Niam! Go Niam!" and cheering himself on.
Suddenly the drudgery of what I know is going to be years of hauling my son around at all hours of the early dawn to play hockey turned into an opportunity. This was a date with my son, it was peaceful time with me sitting in a chair on the stands feeling proud of him do something that he loves. It was chatting to the other parents while the kids played. It was hearing other dads comment about my son's great pass and thoughtful words to another player.
The truth is, I love everything that I do with my kids.
Now the only question is, who gets to take him next weekend?