I recently wrote that we were in the process of figuring out our next vehicle. Well, much to my chagrin, our next vehicle ended up being another Honda Odyssey because it was the sensible thing to do. We did get a different color and, of course, it's newer, but mostly - almost exactly - the same. We drove it off the car lot on a Saturday evening with 89 miles on the odometer. When I pulled in the driveway on Friday evening, the odometer read "644." A little quick math will tell you that means I drove 555 miles in less than a week and I never left the county in which I live. I drove miles and miles between dropping kids off, picking kids up, going to work, taking kids to riding lessons, piano lessons, soccer practice, home in the middle of the day to meet the cable guy, and the list goes on. Miles and Miles.
I turned 40 last week. I wasn't looking forward to it, but I survived. My fabulous family and sweet friends made it a joyful week-long celebration with lots of happy wishes and chocolate! I wonder how many miles I have walked, run, or driven in the past 40 years?? How many more will I travel in the next 40?? It's hard to fathom, but I'll make it with the help of people who love me walking alongside me. Miles and miles we'll go.
It won't be too much longer until I'm driving a few less miles because my oldest daughter will be driving some herself. She will be taking driver's education in April and will be able to get her permit in August when she turns 15. Of course, that will be followed by getting her actual license a year later. On one hand, I will be relieved when she can drive herself places so I don't have to. On the other hand, I'm terrified. I remember my mom saying to me, "It's not that I'm worried about you. It's that I worry about all the other crazy drivers!" Now, I know exactly what she meant! I've begun trying to be conscious about giving my own version of driving lessons when we are in the car. Just other night, as we drove home through pouring rain, I was giving her advice about keeping a greater distance between cars and lowering her speed when driving in the rain. I can only hope that, in the future, she'll hear my voice in the back of her mind as she drives miles and miles on her own.
My middle daughter is now playing soccer on her school's middle school team. I am constantly amazed by her boundless energy. She goes to school all day, runs miles and miles on the soccer field during practice, then comes home and rides more miles on her bike in the driveway. I wish I had an ounce of the energy she has - although this level of energy apparently requires mass quantities of food to maintain! As I entered all the soccer game dates into the calendar on my phone, I was overhwlemed by the amount of additional miles I will be driving over the next couple months to attend all of them. Of course, many of them overlap with her sisters' activities, too. Miles and miles I will go.
My youngest has been struggling a bit with school lately - which means I've been struggling, too. She is such a compassionate, tender-hearted kid that it is hard to be stern with her. However, when it comes to academics and work, she has a lazy streak a mile long, so we had to deliver a little "tough love" to address it. She is only in fourth grade, so she has miles and miles of school ahead of her. Hopefully, the lessons she is learning now will pay off down the road.
You know what seems miles and miles away? Summer vacation. As much as I despise hot, humid temperatures, I adore the slower pace of summer. Sleeping in, hanging out by the pool, and reading lots of books is pure heaven. It's a couple months of the year when I DON'T drive miles and miles in my minivan - unless it's to the beach or the mountains. We haven't panned any summer trips yet, though. Hopefully, we'll be able to go somewhere that is miles and miles away from our ordinary routine. :-)
Do you have summer plans yet? Where will you be traveling?