I took this photo at lunch a few weeks back. A lunch that I went to with 4 boys and me. I had taken them all to church by myself and survived, so I thought lunched sounded like a good idea too. I’m sure I looked like a crazy person walking into the restaurant with 4 boys, all ages nine to four. I’m sure the waiter wasn’t too happy to get our table. I’m sure the people beside us were a little skeptical too. I know I was. And I was feeling the glances and apprehension of anyone that looked our way. I was starting to get a little anxiety and a lot of regret for my decision.

But then something changed. As we sat down, they all started to settle in, and after deciding on lunch, they started talking. Y’all. I just sat and listened as this table of crazy boys discussed football teams and their opinions of the best quarterbacks. They talked about what they were going to do during Christmas break. They talked about what kind of cars they wanted to drive one day. They discussed their hopes and plans for the future. I kid you not, they started talking about where they wanted to go to college and what they wanted to do. They talked about how they would go together.

And all I could think during all of this, besides trying as hard as I could to cram in all into my memory, was that I could have missed this. I could have decided it would be too hard to bring them all by myself and just taken them home for a sandwich instead. Instead of sitting here and listening to this amazing conversation, I could be at home where they wouldn’t make a mess or cause a scene.

Turns out, they didn’t make (a big) mess or cause any trouble. They were amazing lunch dates. They let me see into their world and their thoughts and dreams. And I got to actually be there. Not there cooking and cleaning up and making sure they all had what they needed. Just be there.

And this is why. This is why I go all the places and do all the things and take all the chances with my crazy bunch. I want to experience as much with them and as much of them as I can. I want to fill my memory completely full with all the funny little stories and big ideas. They’ll only be with me for a little while and I want to make the most of it.


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