One of my favorite routines to do each morning is to take a look at my Facebook memories. It's a part of my daily ritual. While I thoroughly enjoy looking at the pictures that pop up from my memories on that particular date, there is inevitably a ping of loss in my stomach.

That feeling comes from seeing pictures of friends and loved ones that have passed on over the years, but it goes beyond even that. When I see pictures of my kids, it is incredible to realize just how much they have changed over a few short years.

This particular week has featured a bunch of pictures that have been taken over the years during family vacations. Judging from my Facebook memories from this entire week, I've apparently taken a lot of vacation time during the third week of August.

Michael Rock/Townsquare Media

Seeing my kids' little toothless grins hammers home the lesson that I now know as an experienced parent of teenagers: those times were so fleeting. While they seemed to last forever while I was going through them, in reality, they were over in a flash.

The feeling of loss stems from the knowledge that even though I'd give anything to be with those little people again, I'll never be able to spend another day with the five-year-old versions of my kids.

The only consolation is being sure to never take the present for granted. Even though I'll never be able to spend time with the pre-school or elementary school versions of my kids again, the teen versions of both of them are pretty fun to be around, too.

Michael Rock/Townsquare Media

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