*Make sure to turn up your volume...
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
1. I love your hands
2. I love your endless sense of adventure
3. I love your need to surprise me...still
4. I love that you are strong where I am weak
5. I love your smell
6. I love that you make the little things special
7. I love your hugs
8. I love that you still tell me I'm beautiful
9. I love that you are a great dad
10. I love that you are smart, so smart
These are just 10 things I love about you... I hope you have a great birthday, you deserve it!
Thursday, October 22, 2009
The seasons are turning around here...
Family dynamics change when your oldest turns 16. Mostly, I think, because they can drive, and they become so much more independent overnight! When I was pregnant with Brit I felt completely overwhelmed and ill-equiped to be a mom. I just didn't feel ready to take on the very real possibility that I could totally screw up another person's life! At my baby shower I received a card with this poem:
If I had my child to raise all over again,
I'd build self-esteem first, and the house later.
I'd finger-paint more, and point the finger less.
I would do less correcting and more connecting.
I'd take my eyes off my watch, and watch with my eyes.
I'd take more hikes and fly more kites.
I'd stop playing serious, and seriously play.
I would run through more fields and gaze at more stars.
I'd do more hugging and less tugging.
~Diane Loomans, from "If I Had My Child To Raise Over Again"
That little poem seemed to have the answers I was looking for at the time, and I decided I didn't want to look back with regrets. After a rocky start, with a colicky newborn, parenting became my favorite thing in this world! I loved bedtime stories and blankies, writing on the walls, and hand written love notes, messy kisses, dirty faces, Legos, kiddie pools, gum in the hair. But kids grow up and bedtime stories are replaced by late night talks about anxieties, or fears, or what secrets the Universe holds. They leave Legos behind in favor of iPods, cell phones, and gym memberships. Kisses and hugs come fewer and farther between. At some point you start to realize that being a mom has become more about teaching your kids how to grow up. It becomes just as important to help them start making their own decisions, help them understand consequences, and to push them just a little toward more independence. That part is so much harder than scrubbing marker off the walls!
So when Brit told me he didn't want to go with us to Arizona this winter, I was hit with a slew of emotions. Pride. Sadness. Admiration. Panic. To name a few. Brit and Kaylee have been taking classes with other homeschoolers this year that he doesn't want to miss out on. He is really involved with a teen group and doesn't want to miss the activities. And since he already does his own laundry, knows how to shop for groceries, can take care of his meals and the animals, and can drive... Why not? Once I caught my breath, I felt like it could work, it would be okay. Kaylee still wanted to go, right? Right? She would never come out and say it, but Kaylee isn't ready to be without her brother and her dad at the same time. And Kaylee really didn't want to miss out on classes, and friends, and...her brother.
Yesterday I made the decision to NOT go to Arizona this winter. Although my son seems to think he can get along just fine without me, and my daughter is willing to suck it up and be my winter buddy, I still feel like being a good mom is my most important concern. And while I do agree that Brit is capable of taking care of himself just fine, I hold to the belief that there are still a few things I can do for him! Don't get me wrong, I have moments of fluttery excitement thinking about "someday" when I can spend entire days gardening, or sewing, or just laying around with a good book. My only concern will be to make it look like I'd gotten anything done by the time Jeff gets home from work. But I'm not ready for "someday" yet.
Now I am off to go shopping, for boots, and gloves, and hats, and scarves... And I can't forget a Snuggie... Or should I go with the Slanket?