Today, I went with my oldest son, Ethan, on a field trip to a University of Louisville baseball game.
In all honesty, I didn’t want to go.
Don’t get me wrong. I like watching baseball games (in person). I just wasn’t thrilled about burning half a day of vacation to go.
Over the past week, every time Ethan asked me to go, I would tell him that it depended on what I had going on at work. I wanted to make sure I didn’t have any meetings but I was also using work as an excuse to avoid going.
Then, yesterday, I realized something.
This was probably going to be my son’s last field trip in elementary school. Next year, when he hits middle school, it’s not going to be “cool” to have his dad go on field trips with him.
I needed to go on this field trip for his sake and for mine.
I can no longer put Ethan on my shoulders or give him a piggyback ride. He doesn’t want me to tuck him in bed at night anymore. Heck, I can barely get a hug out of him (without bribing him).
The fact is that he’s not my little boy anymore.
You don’t have to go far on social media to find parents talking about their older children and about how they wished they had done things differently when their kids were little.
I don’t want to be like that.
I really want to cherish these “last time” moments.
Sure, there will be more moments to cherish as my kids get older. I just can’t hit the reset button and go back and do things again.
I don’t want any regrets.
So for now, I’ll do my best to play basketball with Ethan, jump on the trampoline with my kids each day when they ask, carry my daughter up to bed at night because her legs “don’t work” and I’ll even let my youngest son sit right on top of me when we’re watching TV.
I just don’t want to be a dad that wishes he had done things differently.
I’ll do my best to cherish my time with my kids one piggyback ride at a time.
How about you? What are you doing to cherish those “last time” moments with your kids?