Staying up past my bedtime used to mean
watching "grown up television"
catching glimpses of my parents' parties
fried bologna and onions midnight snacks
fireworks after baseball games
seeing the end of the "Sunday Night Movie"
solving algebra and calculus problems
finishing the term paper due in the morning
an all-night-diner after a traveling Broadway production
the last flight home
Then staying up past my bedtime became
dates at late-night movies
planning a wedding, a birthday, trips home
pushing the hospital visiting hours
round-the-clock newborn feedings
soothing nightmares and fevers
a spouse working evening shift
helping with the homework
lights still on across the hallway
attending band concerts
pick-ups from dances
waiting on a child with a driver's license
waiting on calls to say she made it back to college
Last night, staying up past my bedtime meant
retrieving one happy, tired teenager from the airport
We were all up past our bedtimes, together.
Sometimes the best memories are slumberous.