And still, the kids grew up.
That's the thought that came out of nowhere the other day, shocking me with its illogic: I did all that treasuring and savoring and I couldn't stop them from growing up. I mean, look at them. They're twenty feet tall with opinions and weird feet. Half their text messages are from the opposite sex. All our mail is from colleges. How did I let this happen?
Somehow, I must have picked up on the message (written in regret on the grandmothers' lined faces) that by savoring a moment, I'd stop it from passing. I could avoid the tragic story I heard underneath their advice: my children left, they never call, I'm all alone. There's a sense of reproach in their admonition to "savor" my children's childhoods, as if it's only by inattention those childhoods can pass.