“Hey man, out here again, I see?”
“Yep. I should charge for being his Uber driver.”
“Don’t you just get so tired of waiting?” Small laughter.
“Actually, I don’t mind at all. Because one day, this will all end, and I will miss it.”
As parents, it is something we all do for our kids, especially from middle school until they are able to drive.
We wait a long time.
If we added up all the time we had to wait for our kids to come out from a practice or some after school activity, we would need a calculator because we would be counting for a while.
I don’t mind at all for the simple reason above. One day, my son won’t need me to wait for me to pick him up. I will miss it. Tremendously. I know because I miss picking up my daughter when she was that age, and now she is married and all grown up.
My mother one time told me she loved seeing me play football and couldn’t wait for Friday nights. She said it with such pride for years that did not resonate with me — until I had kids, and I got to enjoy them on the athletic fields or on the stage. It did not matter.
That is why waiting has never bothered me. I will wait until the end of time if that is what it takes. I harken back to my mom and her waiting for me, and I am not sure I ever thanked her. I am not looking for my son to thank me but hoping one day he has his own family, and he will think about what it means to wait.
In fact, I don’t think I have ever met a parent complaining that they have to wait for their kid or kids to get done with whatever activity. In some ways, it is therapeutic. Maybe it is a brief silence in between a crazy day and heading home. Maybe it is reflection on life and living.
For me, it is all of that and none of that. I know that time is fleeting, and so, as I have written before, I just focus on one more day. That is it. I wait, and the rewards are the conversations in those moments when we are heading home.
I had a football coach tell me one thing we can never get back, no matter how hard we try, is time. I know that once this time is gone, it will never come back.
Therefore, I don’t mind waiting at all.
Joe Dubin is an Emmy Award-winning TV personality who lives in Nashville.
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