I am not the only one changing.
Yesterday I decided to let my son go on his first ever neighborhood bike ride without me. Hear me out before you sell my story to be arrested, sued, or whatever for letting him go alone. He was with three other boys, aged 9-12, and had specific rules to not leave our sub-division, stay on sidewalks, and to be home at the exact time I specified. Since I work at the school I basically have enough info for background checks on the older boys and know they are both good students and have good responsible behavior.
When he was an infant, three months old, I was crying on my parent’s patio because I didn’t want to put him in his room alone, because he could be scared or whatever nonsense new moms are faced with. My dad said to me, “He is going to be a man!” And when I got home I moved him. And he did just fine. Those words echoed in my mind looking at him and the group of boys, boys I knew, from parents I knew. And I gave them third degree, especially the older kids and how they have responsibility to keep an eye on the younger kids. Don’t get home on time or do something shady and you are DONE. DONE! (Not sure what that means but the word has worked so far.)
He is going to be a man.
Before I could even say the word yes, my son was gone, burning rubber on his Tony Hawk bike.
I decided to take my own walk around the neighborhood and although I didn’t see him, I did get a phone call from a number I didn’t recognize.
“Mom it’s me, we stopped at the park. This is _____’s phone.”
The park is literally two blocks from our house so I said, “You did the right thing letting me know, thanks.”
He did the right thing. HE DID THE RIGHT THING!!
Now I’m not stupid or naïve enough to think he will always do the right thing. I mean, shit, do any of us always do the right thing?? But this time, this time he did.
My kids are changing. I don’t see the physical as drastically yet. They are both under-sized for their ages. They still wear small sizes. They still want to be tucked in and fed and I still pick out their outfits every day. But they are growing up and little by little it’s time to let go.
I never had the mom-gene that cries at milestones. I don’t miss them as babies (God forbid the crying and sleepless nights), and I don’t miss them as toddlers (Holy hell the tantrums at Target). Every age and stage has just been more and more exciting to me as they have grown.
My changes have been innumerable. Every day I still work through them, accepting them. I don’t see what others see. I may never. And my kids will never see what I see. They are just living, and loving every minute.
So here’s to changes…. theirs, mine and yours. Embrace them and enjoy them.