Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A first good-bye

With some time to pass during a house showing this afternoon, the kids and I headed down to Cook Park.  It's one of our town’s best and biggest parks, and within walking distance of our house (note to person who looked at our house!  You know you want to buy it!  Cook Park!  Come on!).


As the kids ran toward the familiar play structure, I was struck with my first real and unexpected wave of sentimentality about moving.  I suddenly realized the significant role this park plays in my memories of raising our kids this far.  It is the site of countless playdates with good friends over the past 6+ years.  I’ve come with larger groups - MOPS and then MOMS Club - each significant eras for us.  Pete and I have helped run two church “Young Families” picnics here.  We’ve walked down as a family for the annual balloon festival. It’s our go-to spot for leaf-jumping in the fall.  We’ve watched the 4th of July firework show just about every year, which we can see from our house. We’ve seen the play structure remodeled in various forms (I don't miss the sand pit a much as the kids do).  We've witnessed the kids graduate from the toddler play structure to the one for the big kids.  We've chased geese and (dodged goose poop) in the soccer fields.  We've pushed a double stroller along the bike paths to the two connecting parks – and now all four of us walk or ride bikes.

Up until now, I honestly haven’t been too sentimental about leaving.  I think I just assume we'll eventually be back - or maybe the reality just hasn't fully "hit me."  But today I realized in an intensely visceral way that even if we do come back, chances are we won’t be living in the exact same spot or in the exact same area.  As I relived all my Cook Park memories, I felt a twinge of guilt for not visiting it or savoring it as much as I could while I had the chance.  I moved a fair amount growing up, but this is the first time we are moving our own little family.  A chapter in our book is ending – in a way, the first chapter.  And a rich chapter it was.

Cook Park, thank you for providing one of the great settings.

Two moments from today....

And some moments from years past...

(same tree they were both in today)

1 comment:

Bethany Fegles Photography said...

Wow, that made my eyes well with tears! I loved seeing those photos of your kids when they were younger. It brought back memories of living next door. (Such a sweet season!) It also reminded me of the time we met you guys at the "other connecting park" and our family walked a long trail with you guys and had a picnic. Good memories!!