July 29th, 1981 was an unforgettable morning. As a 12 year old girl, waking up at 4am to watch the Royal Wedding of the Century–Prince Charles and Lady Diana–it was life altering. Prior to the arrival of Lady Diana to the world stage, I knew very little about British Royalty, or any royalty for that matter, save those I saw in the Disney fairy-tales. But this wedding, and the media storm there-after, changed my life perspective in a variety of ways.
First, and most importantly, I found I share a birthday with the Queen of England, Elizabeth II. If you are going to share a birthday with someone, well how much better can it get than her! 🙂 I also found a love of British Literature and in particular Shakespeare. A love that grew into my primary college major, and one I do not regret, no matter what people may tell you about majoring in English.
But, there was something more that grew, specifically a love of children. I enjoyed the coverage of Diana, and in particular with her children. No matter what else was said, there is no denying that she loved her children. My own children were born over a decade after hers. But we both share a fact of being a mother to only boys. Boys are wonderful, and little boys are probably the most loving beings a mother could have.
But Diana died when her children were rather young. At the time of her death, my youngest son was less than a year old. I remember being shaken to my core when I realized that if this woman, this mother to the heir to the British throne could die and leave her two young boys behind, well, the fear grew immediately in my heart that I could too.
We all have hopes and dreams for ourselves and of course for our children. And I remember after Diana’s death, all I ever wanted was to see my children as full-grown adults. I wanted to know how tall they would grow to be, see their facial hair, their first dates. I wanted them to at least have a mother until they were fully and completely grown men. Way back then, I couldn’t imagine anything past that, because everyday was tiring fun, tiring work and I was just plain tired.
Well, now it is here. My oldest sons are 24. Grown men working in the world. Science tells me that their brains are the only things that are still growing, and that will take another couple of years to complete (thank God because they both sometimes make the most bone-headed decisions!). And my youngest, well first he can stop growing now, at 6ft 8in any time is perfectly fine with me! He is 21 and a senior in college.
So my wish has come true. My children are truly full grown men. And that is all I hoped and prayed for all those years ago to see is now here right before my eyes. But the selfish side of me is jumping out. Trying to back out of any possible deals I might have made with someone about letting me live until this day came. Because I want more. I want what my parents had with me. I want my children to blossom and I want to witness it with my own eyes. I want to see them become men in the world, God-fearing, spouse loving, fathers. I want to travel with them and see the world through their eyes for as long as I can. There are so many things that I want for them and for me with them. Exhaustion and fear in my youth clouded my vision.
So remember, you with young children, enjoy today as best you can and know that there is more, so much more to come. Even once they are grown, they have more to learn from you and better yet they have even more to teach you.