I Am in Awe of My Children

Our Four Girls

The other day I realized that I am in awe of my children. That somewhere between the teenage years of, “Why do I always have to take out the trash?,” and the mom-age years of, “Mom, can you give me the recipe for your Mock Lasagna?” — they became totally, freaking awesome.

It’s impossible to go back and recall when the shift occurred. Perhaps because the shift was subtle, like the settling of the foundation of your house. One day you look up and notice that the front door is slightly off, that nature is peeking in from the outside through a narrow gap between the door and its frame. You wonder, “When did THAT happen?,” and why you hadn’t noticed the slope of the house changing.

Tam

And so it is with my realization that seemingly overnight our children, my daughters, have, through some cosmic osmosis, morphed into real adults. Adults who KNOW things. Adults who UNDERSTAND things. Adults who REFLECT. Adults who have TALENTS. Adults who have adult friends. Adults who NURTURE, where once that was my job {albeit haphazard at times}.

At some point, I suspect it may have been shortly after I passed the 55 marker, my TO DO list transitioned to pretty much a DONE list when it came to parenthood. I am no longer the primary giver of direction and universal law. I am no longer merely in my story, I am also outside of my story — the woman holding up the mirror behind the woman holding up a mirror towards her life.

I sit in their midst and marvel, really, at who they have all become. What was once chit-chat and bickering between sisters, has turned into conversation. They bounce ideas, they exchange strategies, they.give.advice.

Vern

They have become the warm-hearted women I once admired in other families. Wives in long-standing marriages. Mothers who arrange birthday parties and sleepovers. Women who at once wipe down a table clean and lean in close to hear what their friend is saying. Aunties who dole out admonishment with a gentle tongue and offer encouragement with strong arms.

Liz

The one who couldn’t be trusted to carry scissors through the house, yet alone run with them, now slices and dices vegetables with a cleaver effortlessly into deliciously, tiny bits when preparing a meal. The one who engaged in argument as if it was a child’s right, now carries a voice of reason and discernment far beyond her years. The one who appreciated art is now raising artists of her own. The one who despised always being the responsible one, now navigates almost effortlessly through a part-time career, along with a variety of activities and causes with her family.

Krissy

Time changes things. I was once the one they came to for everything. Then I was not. Now I go to them for advice and suggestions. It is, as Anna Quindlen states, “The older I get, the more I want to be like them.”

How has motherhood changed for you? Or how has motherhood changed you?

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