Every morning this week we have drug our lazy summer selves out of bed, dressed, breakfasted, driven in stop-and-go traffic, and deposited Boy 2 at an art class downtown for three hours.
Then my tired, slightly grumpy crew of three kids and I have sought adventures. We have splashed in the river, ridden a train, climbed a mountain, played at the park, eaten in cafés, and sipped hot cocoa by Lake Austin.
With my list of fun places and things to do in hand, my cape firmly tied around my neck, and a smile on my face, I transformed into Fun Mom.
My kids were loving it. And for a while I was, too.
But by Thursday morning, I was a tad tired from all the cavorting about, all the planning, all the lugging of ice chests, the packing of extra clothes and towels, and the managing of children.
Being Fun Mom is exhausting.
Then I pulled up to a stop light on the corner of Lake Austin Boulevard and there it was, like a beacon shining in the night. “Live a Great Story”, the sign said. And I remembered what I know deep in my bones.
I get one shot at this.
I get one chance to take the kids along broken paths to ancient boat slips where they can fall in the lake and fall in love with summer.
I get one chance to lug lunch up a mountain and eat in the shade while the kids pretend to be stranded forever in the woods.
I get one chance to meander through sculpture gardens and stop to when my 10-year-old is excited to watch cardinals and squirrels scamper and fly around overhead.
I get one chance to pay way too much for hot cocoa so we can sit by the Lake where turtles and fish swim up from murky waters to eat our muffin crumbs.
I get one chance to lose track of time and literally drag the kids out of a store, laughing nervously and shouting, “We’re late! I’m in SO MUCH trouble!” because I am supposed to pick up their brother in one minute and we’re at least fifteen minutes away.
I get one chance to walk with my head held high through the art school campus with all the fancy moms gawking at us because we are wet and slimy, dripping with river water.
I get one chance to write this story called “Motherhood”. I remembered today what kind of story I want to pen. My words, my choices, my attitude, and my ability to lead my kids, it all puts ink to paper and what I am really writing is a guidebook for them called, “How to Live, Love, Learn, and Lead.”
Fun Mom is back on her feet. The world is our oyster and we have things to do and places to conquer. We won’t let our one chance pass us by.
It’s time to write our story.