Aside from holidays, it's a rare day when I get to see all three of my kids. That's one of the down sides of this Empty Nest thing. And even holidays aren't a given anymore.
But today is one of those rare, treasured days! I spent the whole day with Kendall, battling early morning Austin traffic to snatch her from her dorm and hop from one doctor's office to another. First the talkative Nose doctor (I'm too lazy to look up the official term - we've just been calling him the Nose doctor) who entertained us with exciting stories of his Alaskan moose-hunting trips while inspecting Kendall's deviated septum with a long scope. He even let me take a look!
Next, we dashed down the highway to the Allergy doctor's office for our flu shots, shared veggie enchiladas and jalapeno ranch dip at Chuey's, and stocked up on healthy food for her at HEB. We had just enough time to drop the goods off at her dorm (I finally got to meet her roommate) and make it to her cardiologist appointment. She's a pediatric cardiologist - a few years ago when Kendall was playing soccer and running cross-country and there were so many news reports of teenage athletes dropping dead from undiagnosed heart problems, I remembered Kendall's heart murmur diagnosis from her toddler days. (My mother helped me remember!) We had been told it wasn't something to be concerned about, but nevertheless, I knew my mother and I would both rest a lot easier if we had it checked out. The doctor noticed some "abnormalities" but nothing serious - not enough to restrict her activities. Yet...she wanted to see Kendall again. So back we went today to an examining room filled with children's books and Tonka trucks and walls lapped with painted blue waves and chicks and bunnies dotting the examining table. We watched her heart beating strongly on a monitor, (thank you, Lord - what an amazing miracle of machinery!), blood pumping in electric red and blue. Brandon, the technician, gave her a souvenir photograph of it to pin on her wall. The doctor says there has been no change from three years ago...but wants to see her again in three more years. She gets to lay on the bunny and chick table again when she's twenty-one! I hope she lets me go with her so once again I can watch her heart pulsing on the screen, listen to the 'swoosh-swoosh' and remember the first time I heard that wonderful sound of her heart beating, back when it was still housed within my body.
Before heading home, we stopped by Daniel's apartment, delivering goodies from the grocery store and some "mom advice" (nagging) which he takes very sweetly and patiently. Kendall was coming home for the night - it's our high school Homecoming game - but Daniel decided to stay on campus. He'll get to see Tommy tomorrow. So I got my Daniel hug and kiss and headed home with Kendall.
Now Tommy is less than thirty minutes away. Soon he'll be walking through the door, a sight for my sore Mama eyes. I can't even remember the last time I saw him! Seeing the kids head off to college is pretty tough, but at least you still have those long breaks when they're back home and you can fall back into the rut of irritating each other. But once they graduate and have their own place...that's really tough. You're happy for them, of course, and you don't really want them to move back home, but still...you can't help thinking back to when they were around all the time.
We take so much for granted...noses and hearts, kids and days spent together...