Disclaimer: This post is probably going to come out like one of those bittersweet ones and some of you will probably say that I should have given an advance Kleenex warning. On the contrary; this is just an observation. I don’t intend for it to be sad. I’m not sitting here crying. I’m smiling. See?

*This is where I would have inserted a picture of me smiling but I’m too lazy so you’ll have to imagine it, and trust me.*

Being the mom of grown kids is weird. At twenty-three and twenty, D and J are old enough to have all kinds of information stored away in their brains about being productive and successful adults. That said, there’s also a ton of information they don’t know. Sometimes Jim and I forget that certain things can only be learned “on the job” or in real time via life experience; there’s absolutely no way for us to teach or help them with every single life skill until a situation comes up that warrants a lesson, so we make sure we’re prepared to lend a hand when needed.

Those lessons don’t present themselves as often as they used to. Obviously as kids grow, their dependence on parents decreases if the parents are doing it right. They also aren’t under parental “supervision” like they were before.

As our boys grew up, we gave them more leeway and more opportunities to make their own choices on everything from what they wanted to eat for lunch to what they would do in their free time to, well, an infinite number of other things. I have never been that mom who mourns the passing of each age and stage for more than a minute; I’ve always been excited to see them soar, and soar they have.

Now they’re adults. J has just started his junior year in college (What? I know: crazy!) and is looking into taking a Birthright trip all the way across the globe to Israel. Without us. D moved home a month ago and in what seems like record time, found a great new full time job that he will begin Monday. He’ll be a city commuter. They’re doing so well, and we’re so proud. We’ve all adjusted to this “sometimes Jim and I are empty nesters and sometimes we aren’t because sometimes the boys are home for a while and sometimes they aren’t” thing.

So you can imagine my surprise when, earlier this afternoon, I saw a television commercial for Pillsbury Crescent Rolls and how it’s super cool to make Mummy Dogs with them (a twist on “pigs in blankets”) for Halloween and got a little teary because it made me think of this:

Halloween 1997

That led to thinking about carving pumpkins. THAT led to thinking about decorating for Halloween, which I abhor doing and in fact hardly do (or have ever done) at all. THAT led to thinking about taking them trick-or-treating and being the lucky recipient of all the fun sized Almond Joys because they’re my favorite and nobody else in this house eats them. And THAT led to thinking about how time flies. It really does.

I don’t know how we got here so quickly. While I don’t want to go back (except in my memories), I just sit here thinking about it all in amazement: how much we did, how much we didn’t do, how all of that stuff contributed to who we all are today, and how no matter how much involvement I have in their day-to-day lives, I’ll always be their mom.

And maybe, just maybe, I’m planning on making those Mummy Dogs on Halloween.