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Watch Me Grow

Gage's feet How does it happen so quickly? Just a few short memories ago, Andy was a big-eyed four-year old showing me his favorite red truck. In an hour, he’ll arrive with a new show-and-tell: a fiance named Nichelle. I don’t remember watching him cross the line from child to adult … but here he is.

Just a few short memories ago, Zac was a wide-eyed six-year old standing on my sister’s front lawn, alternating gawks between a controlled burn on a long-gone house, and the firemen handling all those flames. I remember with heart-hurting clarity the impassioned look on his freckled face when he turned and announced, “I’m going to be a fireman, Mom.”

As I type this, Zac is home from his first attempt to get into the firefighter academy. He passed the written; passed the physical with flying colors (he actually had the best time in three of the events), and looked the part when he headed out for his oral exam. His appointment — apparently — was at 1420 (military time), but in the translation, he’d written down 2:40. That means this attempt is over.

He loosened his tie and sat in the doorway of my office to tell me his news. Those long legs (did I mention he’s 6’2″ now?) filled the doorway and spilled out into the hall. He’s disappointed, naturally, and embarrassed about the mix-up. But he put the right spin on things. “It must have happened for a reason. I’ll just try again next year.”

Next year will be here before you can say, “Watch me grow.” Andy and Nichelle will be married. The puppy at my feet will be bigger. Tera will be taller. Zac’s legs will likely be longer, and I’ll be ironing that dress shirt for round two.

Oh, Lord, help me capture these minutes and memories.

* * * * * *

Update: Andy and Nichelle now have a sweet boy, Uriah. Zac is leaving Sunday for 3 months on a fishing boat in the Bering Sea. And the little feet in the picture at the top of this post? They belong to my beautiful 14-month old grandson, Gage. They run him from one of us to the other; they chase after the cat, or the dog, or his Auntie, when she’s playing “see if you can catch me.” And one day — long before any of us are ready for it — they’ll walk him down his own independent path, to a waiting world. A gentle word to my lovely daughter-in-law, Brittney (and young mothers everywhere): the minutes slip away quickly. Look long at that little face, and kiss those chubby fingers, and hold your memories close.

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4 Comments on "Watch Me Grow"

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Robin Isaacson
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Hi Shannon! It is so true. It seems like it was a few years ago that we lived in Monroe. It has been 12 1/2 years now that we have been gone. We have such sweet memories with you all. Remembering when you brought Zachary home, the baby shower before. Birthday parties and Christmas Eves with you. I knew it would go fast….people said so, but I still didn’t realize how very fast it would be. We love you guys and think of you and pray for you often. Now we need to enjoy great moments with our grandchildren and… Read more »
Queen of the Click
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Oh such a disappointment…..but also such a sweet retelling of the story!

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