I just realized that in less than a week, Daniel will be gone again, swallowed in a sea of burnt orange at the University of Texas. For me, that means no more South Park episodes or Strong Bad emails on the computer; no more classic Calvin and Hobbes cartoons; no more Robert Heinlein short stories. Without Daniel, I don't make time for those indulgences. Without Daniel, I probably wouldn't enjoy them as much, anyway.
"Hey mom, there's a new Strong Bad email. Want to watch it?"
"Hey mom, you need to watch the _____episode of South Park. You'll like it."
"Hey mom, you need to read this."
So often this summer, I've said, "I'm too busy," just like when they were little. Will I never learn to slow down and enjoy sharing these little times with them? It's amazing he even WANTS to share them with me.
One thing I have done this summer...took the time to go to the movies with them. Tom doesn't like to go to the movies anymore, and he wouldn't like most of the movies we want to see...the silly ones, anyway. He'll like Dark Knight, I think. Get Smart, maybe. But Stepbrothers and Tropic Thunder...I can already hear him saying, "That's not funny - it's stupid!" I'm SO glad my kids inherited my sense of humor, so I have someone to laugh at silly things with me. I don't feel so alone!
Without Daniel, there won't be as much laughter in the house. He can make me laugh with a look, a lift of his eyebrows, a word, a walk. He can make Kendall laugh, which can be really tough, and sometimes it makes her mad, but she still laughs. She can't help it. He can even make Tom laugh when he's mad as hell about Daniel's grades or something.
So for the next few days, I'm going to take advantage of having him here - I'm going to watch all the South Park episodes he thinks I'll like, catch up on the new Strong Bad emails and Teen Squad cartoons, and stop whatever I'm doing to read anything he suggests. I know from experience with his big brother Tommy, these summer days of having him here underfoot, irritating me, helping me, and making me laugh, are numbered. I'm going to miss them. I'm going to miss him.