"Life isn't a matter of milestones, but of moments …"
* Rose F. Kennedy
The next school year will be filled with monumental moments for my children, and myself.
It's my daughter's last year of and my son's entrance into high school.
As my daughter, 18, wonders if there will be enough time this next school year to say goodbye to all her friends while clinging to and trying to create precious memories, my son, 14, wonders if he will be able to find his way around the school to get to classes on time.
Anxious, they both are filled with questions about their future.
Going from being one of the elder students at middle school to becoming a high school newbie, my son worries about his grades and following in his sister's "creative" footsteps.
He wants to know what the next four years are really going to be like. Has he learned what he needs to know for future success?
Beyond school, he wants to know when he will be able to get a job, and ultimately a car.
Heading into the strange and formable world of adulthood, my daughter wants to know about the responsibilities of a grown-up life and having a 40-hour a week job.
She wants to know what to financially expect when, or if, she will be able to leave home to go to college.
She wants to know what the rest of her life will be like. Has she learned what is needed to face the future?
As a parent, these are among the most monumental moments of being a mother.
I remember the first day of school for each of my children.
With a huge smile on her face, my daughter actually ran from the car to get inside the school to meet her teacher and make new friends. She kissed me and was gone.
I hate to admit it, but I was as upset as I was proud of the fact that she didn't need me.
Unsure about what was happening, my son held my hand tightly as we walked into the kindergarten classroom together. I stayed for an hour, as his eyes never left me until it was time for recess, then he didn't need me anymore.
I hated leaving him, but I knew I had to.
I've watched both of them during their previous school years grow into mature young adults with an incredible capacity for love and compassion.
Although I know they will only be children rushing off to their first day of school for a little while longer, I am looking forward to their future as adults.