This afternoon, after a pretty productive week of school, I decided to take a break from parsing, philosophizing, and Peter Fromming and go through the “Misc” folder in my files. That folder has been the place where I have stuffed pictures and letters over the last seven years or so. I found a bunch of old cards and notes from my wife. I found some pictures of when we were dating and engaged. I found a few cards that I had written to Laura. It was like taking a walk down memory lane as I sorted through the stuff I wanted to keep and the stuff I wanted to toss.
Now, you might be asking what in the world this has to do with fatherhood. Well, I realized that all those memories were just Laura and I. All of our holidays, birthdays, and anniversaries have been celebrated without kids in the picture. That made me realize that my wife’s recent birthday, my upcoming birthday, this Thanksgiving, this Christmas, and our anniversary this year will be our last ones without kids. Going through those cards and pictures was another reminder that our lives are about to change in a way that is radically different than all the changes we have already faced together (five moves, two seminaries, job changes etc. etc.).
So with that in mind, I plan to enjoy these “lasts” because they represent a wonderful time in our lives that has been full of joy, struggle, and ultimately learning how to love each other through the good and the bad. Next March we’ll start with a bunch of new “firsts” that will also be full of joys and struggles and I’m sure through those God will continue to teach us how to better love each other and how to fully glorify Him in our new stage of life.