It seems that this stage of life doesn’t allow for the same thoughtfulness that was once afforded to me. Or maybe it’s more to do with the time to breathe and reflect. However, one of closest friends gave me a journal for Christmas a few years back and it reminded me how much I love writing. More for myself than anything else but having this platform is a pretty cool outlet. Taking an opportunity to share life with people is really what it’s all about. I think I’ve referred to the quote “it takes a village” a few times in this blog and as we’ve become immersed in the teen years in our home I think we’ve cherished that phrase more than ever before. Which is really why I have chosen to blog over the years, it helps me connect my own thoughts and if, somehow along the way it reaches someone else who really needed to feel company in their own journey then all the better.
Anyway, so many years later, I’ve come back here. No promises to myself of how often I may return but for the moment a place to collect myself. Honestly there are so many things I could probably record here. At the time I first drafted this post. Sam was 5 months away from driving, Jake had a year and half left until he entered high school, Lanae was about to enter into the jungle called middle school and only my baby girl, Annie was left to brave the last years of elementary school all by herself.
Now three years later, Sam has just finished his first semester of university, Jake is in grade 10, Lanae is finishing middle school this year and Annie has entered her first year of middle school. No more little ones in elementary school and in a blink all of them will either be in high school or nearly finished.
I’ve come to appreciate why elderly people sometimes participate in life like they are still 25. It’s because the time goes so fast people and it really does feel like 25 was only a year ago. I mean to be fair, I’m definitely not as physically capable as I once was, things hurt faster and heal slower. Getting sick means I should probably plan for at least a week of recovery BUT my brain tells me I still look like the day I got married and my memory, when it’s working, clearly recalls the entire events of the day I gave birth to my first born. So really while 18 1/2 years SOUNDS like a really long time, it passed in mere minutes.
Ha, so I digress, of course. Another danger of middle-age, too much to share, rabbit holes to chase…
I thought I might spend some time picking apart a few tidbits of parenting teenagers. We’ve really only shared in this joy for the six years of parenting but I can definitely understand why people would attribute the accumulation of grey hair to these years. I can also understand, as I read blogs, articles, hear discussion and enter dialogue with other parents, why we so often present such a small face of our lives to the rest of the world. The pace at which we make decisions, the agony we feel as we toil over the right approach, the battles we wage with ourselves and our teens often leave us so drained that the best option is to put on the happy face, take a selfie and celebrate the fact that we survived. Right, I know that’s not a great response but it’s real.
First let me say, as I’ve said before, that every new stage we enter with our kiddos I love that much more than the last. Sure each stage has it’s challenges but there is such joy in actually sharing life with your kids as they grow. Each lesson they learn, each challenge they overcome, each decision they spend time mulling over brings a sense of deeper love for them as people. Even the moments when I question the wisdom of one of their choices I find myself learning to appreciate the ability they have to think through their options and then jump wholeheartedly into it.
When I first began this post I had recently participated in a parenting teen class. It was interesting to be in a room of individuals who were in the same parenting stage as us and recognized that we all had different approaches, different family values, different interests, and yet, the goal we shared was the same. To understand our children, give them space to grow, nurture their inherent worth, teach them to understand our values, faith and choices and then ultimately walk beside them as they continued the journey of discovering all these things for themselves.
Over the last few years, there are few things that have changed in our journey, the biggest one being some shifts in our spiritual perspective, which I’m hoping to document another time. However, the goals we have as parents has not changed. It’s neat to have been able to witness some of these goals met over the last couple of years and know that we are headed in the right direction even if there are a few bumps along the way.
Now that I’m back here, I’m hoping time will allow me to document some of these amazing moments. This little venture is more for myself than anything, people now who want to be influencers use twitter, instagram, daily, weekly, month e-newsletters. I’m just here on my happy little blog archiving the life I’m living and maybe one day it will be a place for my kids to see a piece of me.