Words To Live By:

"The work will wait while you show the child the rainbow, but the rainbow won't wait while you finish the work."

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Almost a grown up...

There are days when I'm dumbstruck at how grown up my oldest monkey has become.  I look at him with wonder and awe intermingled with a little bit of sadness remembering when he used to need me for things - almost everything in fact.  He's eight years old.  Almost a grown up, according to him.  Halfway to a driver's license to put it in perspective. He hasn't needed my help with dressing, brushing his teeth, or getting his things gathered for school for quite some time.  He can get his own snacks, feed the dog, load & unload the dishwasher, and find a quiet spot to read all on his own.  He helps with chores, plays creatively, and has astounding logic that you can't argue with at all.  He's almost a grown up...

I've noticed his independence developing with little things - increased modesty, bathing on his own (even the shampoo!), not acknowledging me at school, even in how he interacts with Justin.  He wants hugs before bed, but he doesn't want to be tucked in.  "I'll tuck myself in, Mommy." I know this is all par for the course as a parent.  I know our kids do get older, and change, and become their own person.  But in all honesty, there are days when I feel like it's taken me by surprise.  The kid knows how to Google and use YouTube, for Pete's sake! (I shudder at this and want to put super filters and kid-safe software on the computer.)  He's almost a grown up...

This morning I woke up at my regular time and began our regular routine.  I passed him in the dark hallway and stated our regular dialogue.  "Time to get dressed.  What do you want for breakfast?"  To which he replied, "I am dressed, Mommy.  I already ate and now I'm going to brush my teeth."   What???? I hadn't even showered yet and he got himself breakfast?!  He then proceeded through the rest of his morning to-do list with plenty of time to spare and no nagging on my part.  Sweet.  He's almost a grown up...

I volunteered in his class today.  He makes me proud.  He doesn't interrupt.  He listens intently.  He asks questions when he isn't sure about something.  He's helpful with his classmates.  He's respectful and kind.  I left as the class was getting ready for morning recess.  I told him I'd be back at lunch and he could come say "hi" on the yard.  His response:  "Maybe.  I have other things to do at lunch."  Okay then.  He's almost a grown up...

I look at the smile that lights up his face when he gets off the bus in the afternoon.  I observe his pride when he finally gets that difficult homework problem we've been tackling.  I see him save his money and weigh his choices when it comes to spending it.  I watch, bemused, as he sets about his chores and gives just the slightest bit of attitude and a rolling of the eyes.  I glimpse the young man he's becoming, no longer my baby or little boy.  A child that isn't so childish.  He's almost a grown up...

I still get my hugs from this almost-a-grown-up at the end of each day.  More than one, in fact (he likes to procrastinate at bedtime.)  I hope that no matter how independent he becomes, how much he changes, how much he grows, he'll always know that I'm proud of him, that I love him unconditionally, that his hugs mean the world to me.  I hope he remembers that no matter how far he goes, no matter what he does or who he becomes, there will always be a place in my heart where he'll still be my baby.  He's almost a grown up... but I think deep down, in the face of the person he is growing into, I'll always see a shadow of the little boy he's been.

2 comments:

Grace said...

Beautiful!.. amazing and scary at the same time how fast they GROW up :)

Aunt Janet said...

oh Linds, you have such a way with words.....and you're such a great Mom! A wonderful grown-up!

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