Sunday, May 12, 2019

Journey through Motherhood

At "Time to Fly" event benefiting CCRF, 2009
In my neighborhood I am surrounded by mothers at every stage of the journey. My next-door-neighbor has an adorable soon-to-be 3-year-old, down the street are siblings 8 and younger, across the street is a teenager and down from him are recent empty nesters.

My girls will be 16 and 14 this year — we are nearing the end of the "raising" portion of parenthood. Soon we will be entering the "why doesn't she ever call" portion of parenthood, followed shortly, I've heard, by the "my kids finally appreciate me" portion.

I find this stage to be rather ironic.

I mean, when our kids are little, they are just so darn cute, but they are also so much darn work! Their fingers and faces are always sticky, they are constantly needing to be fed, changed or taken to the bathroom, bathed, reasoned with, (as much as you can reason with babies or toddlers), and so on and so forth. They are a lot of work, from which parents often need a break. If I ever had even an hour to myself in my home without my children around, what a joyous time it was! Laundry got done, floors got mopped, windows got cleaned. One time Wayne and I took advantage of a "parents night out" at KinderCare, where they stayed open until 10 p.m. so parents could have a date night, and he and I washed all the windows in our house. They hadn't been washed since our kids had been born, we were happy to have spent our child-free time that way.

Marissa decided not to smile this day. 2012
Then your kids grow and grow, and at this stage they are...people. Fascinating, interesting people! They have opinions and ideas and really big, new words to communicate them. They are absorbing the world around them, making their own decisions about what's right or what's wrong, and wow, look out world, there is some change a-coming! They are so fun to do things with, to go shopping, or out to eat. 

But just as your kids get really fun to hang out with, they don't want to hang out with you. They'd rather be with their friends, watching movies, playing soccer, going to Starbuck's, building relationships with friends their own age. 

Soccer, Summer of 2017
Lindsey, Homecoming 2018
Marissa Selfie, 2019
When they want to spend time with me, I'll be here, ready to reminisce with them about the good old days when they used to play with water tables, push the dog around in a doll baby carrier, and do other silly things. Those stories are always good for a laugh.

Happy Mother's Day. 

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