Just thinking about my kids growing up. It makes me feel a little sad and happy at the same time.
To think back at all the times we have had so far and hopes for many, many, many more years to follow and thinking about how quickly time passes, it always makes me feel like all the time in the world is not enough.
My oldest kid is going into the 7th grade and I know what kind of emotions she will go through that will determine who she becomes as an adult and it is a little scary to me.
She’ll soon be leaving all the little girl things behind and embracing new things that come with tougher challenges that mom just cannot problem solve for her and where I know that hugs will not be enough anymore.
I hope she has an easier time making it through her teenage years. I know this is just the beginning and I can already see how much she has changed and how she feels with the things she won’t talk to me about it tries to.
I think that is a good sign although I wish it was easier already. She wanted to get make up yesterday. I don’t have a problem with that. I remember wanting the same things when I was about her ago too.
The difference is that my mom wasn’t easy to talk to about those things. Culturally my mom and I were different. She grew up in the Philippines and I was growing up American. We didn’t talk about “growing up” and I do my best with my own daughter to keep the lines open and honest so that she doesn’t have to feel embarrassed about anything the way I did.
I really want her to grow up strong and empowered to be whatever she wants or who she is in her core and I hope the things that I do know she loves don’t give way to peer pressure. I mean, in that sense, I hope she doesn’t change just to fit in and whatever changes she makes, I hope they are genuine.
I don’t want to put too much pressure on her and at the same time I don’t want her to slip too far.
I was just looking at some pics from just a few years ago and the difference is unbelievable in so many ways.
My toothless baby girl who used to love to wear dresses and watch the Backyardagains is now into skinny jeans and lipstick.
She has gone from scribble doodles on paper to drawing in detail and she really is becoming an amazing artist.
Yesterday she asked me to hang in the pool with her and “chill” and just talk. She’s even gotten my sense of humor which I find even funnier since she usually says that I am “embarrassing” to her.
Oh yes, I do try to be because I want her to know that people shouldn’t change or stop having fun or to make light of hard situations just because others don’t see things the same way or they are expected to act like “grown ups.”
Yesterday during karate practice, I asked to use her to practice something. She hesitantly complied…kind of.
While I was nudging her trying to get her to do something, she snuck in a sneak slap that threw me off guard which had me shocked but also impressed.
I know, I know. My own mother and probably yours too would have whooped your ass for doing something like that yet there I was impressed by the stealth and unpredictability and humor in the way the whole thing came about.
I thought, “that’s my girl”. Indeed, that IS my girl and I love her so much and in little moments like that I cannot even express the amount of gratitude I have for having such an exquisite young person in my life who this hat has been my rock is so many ways.
Back when she was still in diapers and I was struggling with how to handle being a single mom, scared in every way about how I was to take care of this little human, I would hold her and cry and tell her it would be okay and just being there with her in my arms gave me all the strength and courage I needed to make hard and scary decisions that would undoubtedly effect the rest of her life.
She taught me to see clearly and to use more of my brain where my heart was concerned. That’s not to say my heart didn’t play a role in my choices BUT she did widen me up, sober me up, and set me straight.
I have been so fortunate since she came along. I am blessed with an amazing husband who took her as his own child and has never wavered from being her dad.
I have another child who, through toddlerhood pushed me to my very limits where I wanted to run away and felt like I was loosing my mind but there she was again to tell me when I was being “scary” or to help me out to my surprise when I got sick or too tired.
She such a good kid and these are new times for us and I hope, hope, hope that in the years to come, that part of her doesn’t change.
From pink fluffy dresses to skinny jeans and lipstick.