Life is myopic. We experience our lives through tunnel vision, unaware of things outside our immediate concerns.
Now that our son is driving, we've noticed how the next door elementary school parents park in the students' spots as a convenience during morning drop off. Exasperated, I tossed an email at the principal, asking him to let parents know that their patronage of those spots is ill timed and downright thoughtless. He begged for understanding (they have no parking lot at all). An older student told us that this has been happening for years.
We never noticed before.
As I visit the library, study plant options for this fall at Pike's Nursery, or enjoy breakfast at Olde Hickory House with my husband, I can hear the wailing cries of bored children who would rather be anywhere else. Their pitch is perfect, grabbing the wincing attention of every adult in hearing distance. When my kids were little, I honestly never heard those wails since my children were yammering about anything and everything on their minds. Now that I'm one of those "older moms," I hear every shriek.
"Just you wait," older friends and family have told me through the years. Aches and pains, college tuition, teen parties with beer as the star attraction, hot flashes, clothes shopping with a tween, the dog you get when the puppy has grown, boredom with stuff that was once integral to "living large" (like eating at trendy restaurants or going to a concert of ANY kind) . . . I never understood why people stopped being interested in staying current and keeping the social calendar as full as possible.
Now I'm getting there. And I get it.