Thursday, July 21, 2011

I can't be that old

Ten years ago today Sweet Pea was born. You'd think my birthday last week would have been enough to make me feel old. I'm in my mid thirties now and my body is starting to remind me I'm not as young as I used to be. But what's really hit me hard is realizing I have a child in double digits.

She's growing up. Starting middle school. And she'd kill me for mentioning this here, but she's definitely working hard on those pre-teen hormones. She's moody and starting to value her privacy. I can see so much of my own teenage struggles when I look at her (which hopefully will make the next 8 years bearable since I can remember and relate).

My life seems to be changing and I'm not ready. I thought I had more time. Time to cuddle her. Time for us to color and play games and laugh over movies together. Lately, she'd rather spend time in her own room than with me. I realize, logically, that this is what's supposed to happen. We raise our children to rely on themselves so that eventually they can live their own lives. I can see Sweet Pea taking those first steps and I'm not ready to let go.

For her birthday she asked to take her good friend to the movies...alone. They want me to drop them off and pick them back up later. It'll be the first time that I've actually done that. I will admit that I don't plan on going far (actually, I'm just going to see a different movie). She's chomping at the bit to grow up. But I think I'm going to keep hold of the reins for just a little while.

Have you ever had to let something go?



Maven Linda said...

You have to let go of everything, eventually.

But you know what? Print out your blog, and let her read it. Post it in her room. It might help give her a different perspective when she's in the middle of a hormonal meltdown.

PC's Mom said...

When my son was born everything he did seemed amazing - holding a toy, sitting up, and pulling to his feet. He walked at nine months and that was my epiphany. That first step was his first step toward independence and away from me.

That step didn't make the other letting go phases any easier, but the emotional impact was less.

Playground Monitor said...

The two most important things you can give your children is roots to keep them grounded and wings so they can fly. And at some point they have to test those wings.

I think your movie plan sounds good. You'll be in the next theater.

I've sent mine off to kindergarten and then later to college. I've got one whose married with a child of his own, and she's starting kindergarten in a few weeks.

My how the years fly!

Playground Monitor said... WHO'S married...


PM's Mother said...

We don't own our children -- we only borrow them for a while.

I remember how apprehensive I was when I let PM out of the car on her first day of school and watched that little child walk away from me; and I had the same feeling when I left her at college twelve years later. When her sister started to school and then to college it was so much easier on me.

pjk said...

Reading your blog brought back many memories.

My two daughters are grown, and I'm about to send my stepson off to college, which has been just as hard as when my own children left.

Hang in there!

Julie Miller said...

Hang in there, mama. Every age requires us parents to grow as much as the kids, sometimes.

I'm still working on letting my 21 year-old be the fine young man he is. This may be his last summer home with us from college. (He'll always be my little boy, but though I sometimes tear up--when he's not looking!--I'm so proud to see how he's grown up). But I sneak in a hug when I can and talk about whatever/whenever he's willing. But I understand that, ultimately, I can't go out into the world with him. I just need to let him know he will always be loved and that he always has a place to come home to if or when he needs to.

Katherine Bone said...

Happy Birthday to Sweet Pea!

Instigator said...

Thanks everyone - for the understanding and birthday wishes. :-)

I think I will print out this blog so that I can show her. I'm not sure I'll do it today, but I know one day it will come in handy - either as a reminder that I love her or as evidence that I went through the teenage craziness myself. :-)

robertsonreads said...

You ladies are so right, we have to let them go or otherwise when they are 50 and wanting us to still support them financially and still living with us. I let my son really fly at 16 when he went to live with his dad. And most recently he joined the Marines. The past 7 months Kyle has been in San Diego, but in the past 2 weeks he came back east to NC. They have to grow up and trust me they do come back loving us a lot.

And occassionally they will give you a hug for no reason.

Angel said...

You know, I'm having the odd moments with Drama Queen when I can't believe how grown up she's becoming, but I'm struggling more with Little Man. He'll do something and I'll think, "OMG, my baby is... I can't believe it."

Yep, these times they are a-changin'!


Cheryl said...

Happy Birthday Sweet Pea! I only had one child and when he left home for college at 18 I felt like my life was literally over. My baby was grown! Well, he still calls when he has a problem and I know it when he starts with "Mommy..." (Not Mom or Mother). You will always be needed just remember that. And, believe it or not, after the teenage years, you actually become smarter when they realize maybe Mom knows something. Hang in there!!!