When Ramee asked us if we would each do a short "guest" post about our experiences as mothers I struggled with what I could contribute. I have two beautiful teenagers and two fantastic bonus teenagers. Then it hit me; I'm in the home stretch of first part of motherhood. I've done the pregnancy; the babies; the toddlerhood; the pre-school; and grade school. Now, I'm coming in on those last five crucial years of teenagers. It hit me on Sunday as I sat in my "baby's" banquet for her all-star cheer team. The coach's daughter was a graduating senior after 12 years of being in the gym with her mom. There was hardly a dry eye in the room. At that moment I realized that with my children I have precious few moments left until I reach that last moment of "child-rearing" and then I will be watching them do their "thing" for the last time before I send each of them out into the world.
I thought about my 14 1/2 year old son. He has grown into such a fantastic young man. He "graduates" junior high on June 2. I cannot believe that in three months we will be teaching him how to drive. Then over the next four years I will be watching his last wrestling match; watching him prepare to venture out into the world and let go of all of us so he can be his own man.
I looked across at the teenagers table that Sunday at my newest teenager, my daughter, my baby. She's already so independent. She grows more independent each day. She has ventured into wearing make-up. She's going into 8th grade. She definitely has her own opinion. I envisioned myself standing up there behind my senior at the last ever cheer banquet; realizing that this phase will all be over.
I will all too soon be facing the fact that my job in rearing the practically perfect in every way people will have come to an end and that they will be going out on their own adventures. So many people cry. I will cry (it's a given). But, it's not because it will be a sad moment. Just as I witnessed on Sunday, it's a cry that will filled with pride, happiness, fulfillment. We mother's in the home stretch are coming to that point in our child rearing where although we do have days of intense frustration with our more than vocal and opinionated teenage, almost-adults; we realize that we have accomplished the almost insurmountable task that seemed so far away on that day when the doctor placed those fantastic little individuals in our hands.
Enjoy every phase of motherhood, the pregnancy; the baby phase (the smell of clean baby head is like no other); the toddler phase; the pre-school phase; the grade school phase; and the HOME STRETCH because all too soon, we are going to transition from the leading character in the lives of our children to their fantastic support staff.