I've mentioned them before. My ALWAYS friends. THEY WILL ALWAYS BE MY FRIENDS. ALWAYS.
I have two hand fulls of ALWAYS friends. Several go without saying. Then there are two - the ALWAYS friends I met one summer. One summer many years ago. Yes, we lost touch. We re-connected. They now have a friendship with my sons I couldn't have imagined. It's a friendship we should always have. With someone.
Only now I realize they are my sons friends. They will forever be my friends, but my boys come first.
I'm very okay with this.
Are these the best role models for two young men? No. Absolutely not.
Would they go to the end of the Earth to get my sons? Drive them back? Not tell me? Make sure they are okay? Yes. Without one moment hesitation.
In fact, my sons now get invited to the camping trips and parties before me. It doesn't make me sad at all - it makes me smile. Only they are stuck with mom for a few more years on these trips - then mom won't go. We will let them journey on without me.
We have an annual trip to Moab, UT. My always friends go. One day I had been out on a motorcycle ride. I get back to camp. Duncan is jumping around. In a red Under Armour Shirt and grey shorts shouting "I got to drive, I GOT TO DRIVE" "ED, taught me how to drive". WHAT? Rich said the look on my face was priceless. "WHAT? You taught him to drive????"
"He's twelve", I thought it was time.
Two years pass. We arrive in Moab again.
Yes, they remembered it was Nolan's turn. It was Nolan's turn to learn to drive. We are on dirt roads in the middle of nowhere and Ed decides it's Nolan's turn - he's 12 after all. Gee, here is an adult whom has been drinking beer all day and a twelve year old whom has never driven before. We are going to wait until the morning.
I then turn my back. Yes, you guessed it. I just shook my head as Nolan appeared back into the campsite driving the Land Rover.
He waited. He hoped. He dreamed. It was his turn. It was his rite of passage.
Tonight, we were having dinner at a house with some of the people from our Moab trip. The youngest son is 11 and turns 12 in April. His mom mentioned how excited he is to be 12 for this Moab trip in the spring. He will get to learn to drive.
First thought: This is a rite of passage for my sons. Not yours. Sorry.
Second thought: When did you say his birthday is? It's TWO weeks AFTER Moab. They aren't going to make an exception. We are going to have to move up his birthday.
He's SO excited that the Quinn brothers will teach him how to drive. I'm only a tad bit possessive that he thinks he's included in this rite of passage. And at the same moment, SO excited that we now have a third boy ready to pass over the "rite of passage".
Of course we will include him. Of course my "brothers" will make sure he gets his turn.
It's his "rite" after all.....