Ten. Ten pictures to sum up almost eighteen years of my eldest son’s life. I had been forewarned last year by another mom who had a senior. The senior slideshow is on Senior Night. Seniors and their parents are served dinner by the junior class (my son worked it last year), and everyone watches a slideshow. Each senior submits ten pictures…. two baby, two toddler, two elementary, one freshman picture, and three senior pictures. It’s a cry fest.

How was I supposed to pick just ten? What if I cried the whole time while looking? The night we decided to pick out the pictures, we were all drained. School, ball practice, dance, homework… it seemed like a daunting task. I put my foot down and told my son and husband it was time to “get it done “. I’m thinking, “You can do this. You have to.” I couldn’t believe it. The more we all looked, the more we laughed. There were professional studio pictures that we saw from newborn to this current year. There were school pictures and sports pictures. There were snapshots, of course.

One of my favorites was one I actually took (I don’t have mad photography skills). Clark was five. The baseball party was at the lake. He and several boys were sitting at a picnic table waiting for burgers that the dad’s were grilling. I snapped the picture. When I had the roll developed (I’m old, okay?), Clark was clasping his hands to pray and his eyes were tightly closed. He was the only one praying. I’m not judging! It was just so sweet. We didn’t include this one, but another fact about Clark is his humor. He did include a middle school picture that would be considered the “awkward ” phase.😂

To say I’m proud of him (ALL three of my children) is an understatement. To say I’m going through a slight grieving period would also be true. Didn’t he just start preschool? I distinctly remember playing Nerf Guns like it was last night. Isn’t it time for travel baseball again? These years went by quickly. We don’t have our children to keep them little. They always need us, though, and I’m glad that growing up doesn’t mean grown.

Grown (by Katie Presley)

Assorted crayons,

Monogrammed backpacks,

Healthy lunchbox,

Blanket, nap mat.

Tucked in shirt,

And nice neat hair,

School uniforms,

Sweaty sports gear.

Just started preschool,

Can’t believe he’s done.

Years go by,

It was lots of fun.

Little boy to almost man,

Went by too fast,

Can we do again?

I love you, son.

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