Feb 4, 2015

Date Day

I only used to think I was busy when the kids were little.  That was before they hit adolescence and I was schooled in what busy truly means.  I had no idea life could get any more hectic than what we were already experiencing.  Boy, was I wrong.

The crazy thing is, we make a concerted effort to keep our lives free of too much clutter - too much stuff.  We avoid overbooking our schedule.  We only allow the kids 1 after school activity each.  We are purposeful about our time together.  We consciously and considerately check the calendar before we commit to anything.  And even after all this....we still end up busy almost every night of the week running a mini taxi service to and from activities.

I am super thankful we have the means and the kids have the opportunities they do.  I wouldn't want to deny them these activities that enrich their lives.  But I also want the kids to know that even though we are bound by all these activity commitments, they don't rule our lives.  We actually plan for 'down time'.  We allot time for rest, reading, hanging out, contemplation.  When you don't take time to recharge you can't enjoy the benefits of the things you enjoy doing.

In steps Gavin and Mom's Date Day.  We have been going on dates for years.  But lately, I needed to go on a date with Gavin.  I just never see him.  He's always at school or Mock Trial events or in his room studying for all his AP courses.  I had to make a concerted effort to show him that even though he's 16 now, I still love hanging out with him, talking with him, doing things he enjoys and listening to his thoughts and dreams.

We started this lovely day out by rock climbing.  If that doesn't say I love you, then I don't know what else will. Our local REI has a special rock climbing area called: The Pinnacle.  


This is Gavin starting out...he's a natural rock climber. He has no fear.  It comes very easy to him.  He shimmies up face of the out-cropping like all he's doing is climbing a ladder. If I sound jealous, I'm not.  I don't like climbing ladders.


And here's Spiderman near the pinnacle much higher off the ground than I will ever be when not in an airplane or an elevator.


And here I am after receiving sound climbing advice from the stranger who has committed to keeping me alive with these tiny ropes should I slip and fall on my endeavor.  Confidence is written all over my face.  All I have to do is follow the rules.  Easy enough.


At this point I begin wondering how soon is too soon to come down.  You can't tell that of course because of my expert form, but I'm freaking out and I'm not yet 3 feet off the ground.


At this point I'm thinking I'm high enough to look like I'm having fun and call it quits without looking like a scardy cat. The problem lies in the fact that both of my feet are cramped - unusable.  And so are my hands.  They are stuck in a permanent "hold the wall for dear life" position.  So, I'm trying to velcro myself to the side, unsuccessfully.

I made it half-way up and managed to not embarrass Gavin.  Success!  He even said he was proud of me.  That's because I didn't cry, whine or scream.  I do what I can to impress my son.

From this place of limitless exhilaration we found ourselves headed to the movies.  Gavin was our chauffeur for the day, even driving the highways.  We chose to see The Imitation Game which was superbly done and gave us plenty of conversation fodder for our late lunch.


Here we are, the only people in the theater, taking selfies over and over and over again.  I know teenagers.  This is cool.  This is what you do no matter how much you hate taking your own picture. On half of the pictures, I was the only one in the frame, on the other half, he was.  Some of them were so bad we could see up our noses, other's our faces looked way too large.  The angles and lighting might have been all wrong - but our laughing and time together was all right.
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