In 12 days it’ll be our youngest daughter’s birthday. She’s been counting down for months and in earnest, since the beginning of October. Every morning she cheerfully tells us how many more days it is till her big day. Her little brother also joins in on the countdown, sprouting random numbers each day. This year she is eleven. And I shudder as the impending day draws nearer & nearer.
My fear was brought about by a small event last week. She loves to make up little performances and constantly dances about the house. Performing her latest dance routine with I as her ‘distracted’ audience, she sensed that I wasn’t taking as much interest as I ought. She swiftly told me that I should, “make the most of it, I’ll be a teenager one day!” And didn’t she totally hit the nail on the head?
We have 2 teenagers, they’re beautiful kids & no trouble ( so far) but I feel as though life is falling through my fingers like sand at the beach. It’s all silky smooth and lovely while you have it but it falls so quickly, once it starts, cannot be stopped. And you just want to scoop another handful straight away.
So as my little darling fast approaches those precious Pre teen years I feel the need to hug her constantly, I even plonked her on my lap the other day just to prove she’d still fit! I don’t huff if she request more than 1 good night kiss, I’ll happily braid her hair before school and take her to the skate park after school. I’m taking time for all the things that I should “make the most of” before those things slowly slip away into the teenage abyss. I remember the year she turned 4. She walked down the hallway and declared to us all that, “today, I am four!” It’s a priceless memory.
When your children are little the days seem to go so slow. I remember counting down the hours till bedtime & getting excited at those first signs of tiredness. Thinking “Yes, soon they’ll be asleep and the day will be done”. But then what? You wake, do it all over again, wish for bedtime and the day to be over and before you know it they’re about to turn 11 and you realise that a whole chunk of their life & yours is over.
So I’m slowing down & smelling the roses a whole lot more. Taking time to make the most of each dance, each song, each seemingly silly conversation. I’m implanting them in my memory to have & hold onto as my children grow into wonderful teenagers & one day adults. Oh hang on a minute! I’m not quite ready for that stage just yet…..