Number 4079


This is a year of passages - lots of passages.

In some ways I feel like I am in the middle of a full-blown wild river-rafting trip with rapids coming in quick succession.

After 20 or 30 rapids, it becomes hard to differentiate between them and the memory, and after a while, it all becomes a blur of white water.

On Monday night, with only 2 minutes left in the second overtime the other team scored and our hockey season was over.

It's over.

I slid the lens cover and cap onto the lens and put the camera into my backpack. The last image is recorded as DSC_4079.

It's hard to believe that it was just 4 years ago that 4 of the kids from this team were all together up in the most northern reaches of Michigan that you can find, dueling for the state championship.

At this stage of life, there are so many changes, such big differences between a 14 year old and an 18 year old.

Let's not even mention that the boy is now bigger than me.

I still remember his first year, and how he filled up the bassinette on a 747 as we flew home from Hawaii. He was only 6 weeks old at the time, and now I've taken photo number 4079, and the hockey games are over.

Next week starts practice for track, and after the rush of a few more rapids, the last track event will be over.... and so will be all of the high school sports.

And before high school there was baseball, basketball, soccer, and hockey. Let's also not forget dance recitals, one of which the boy was roped into by his two sisters. He did the boy bit by running around in the Nutcracker, and then vowed to never do it again.

I dunno, but it's strange, this passage to the empty nest.

We talked the other night with another hockey parent who was also on that team from 4 years ago. By his count and ours we figure that between the boy and the girls we have been to over a thousand events since my first born laced up figure skates sometime around age 4 or 5.

That's 19 years of watching, and all of a sudden, the games are almost all over.

It almost makes one want to start over.