“This is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.”
- Winston Churchill
For the past two years, I have had the pleasure of letting readers of this column into the life of just another, multi-tasking, married, working Mom, and it’s been wonderful. Each week I’ve reflected on some aspect of parenting and family and whether it was deep and emotional or downright ridiculous, looking back on these stories is a trip. While I’m sad to say that this week’s column will be my last with Patch, there will most definitely be a next chapter.
Before I go there, I want to give you one last parenting chestnut that writing this column has taught me.
We all know what it’s like to look at pictures of the kids when they were little. You can hardly believe that your once-tiny baby now takes a bus to school or plays on the Travel Soccer Team or is going to the Prom. But a picture is just that: it’s a snapshot in time. One frame that captures a single second.
Now think about all of the video stored on tapes, computers and phones. We set the kids up and have them perform for us while we document it to view for years to come. It’s a great way to see what was happening at that moment, but we’ll only ever be able to watch.
What I have found in looking over the past two years of weekly diary entries (because let’s face it, that’s what this has been and I willingly gave you all the key) is that writing these stories has provided me a way to remember how I was feeling and what the kids said, all while nobody realized that I was doing it. I know that I’m not the first person to ever write a journal of their life, but with all of the technology at our fingertips sometimes we forget that it can be the simple things that mean the most.
And so, as the good Prime Minister so eloquently stated, this is just the end of the beginning. I’ve decided to continue chronicling the tales of The Shumway Clan in a blog titled “Notes from the Ledge” and I hope you’ll follow me. While still in it’s infancy (heh heh, a little “Tireless Mom” humor for you there), bear with me and I’ll do my best to keep posting once a week. I’ll also be bringing back a few oldies but goodies so if you have a favorite story – you know, one that made you say, “She’s a whole lot of crazy; guess I’m doing a pretty good job with MY family,” – then let me know and I’ll try to post it soon.
Therefore, like every aspect of parenting, I brace myself for the next change. I’m looking forward to bringing you more laughter, smiles and the occasional tear, so please come along for the ride. From the bottom of my heart, thanks for taking the time to read my “Tales,” and I hope that you’ll consider writing your own too. Whether you share it with others or keep it for yourself is up to you; for me, it’s been a real gift.
I will leave you with the words of author Frank Herbert: “There is no real ending. It’s just the place where you stop the story.”