From the time our children come into our lives, we start the process of teaching them to grow up, mature and take care of themselves. That is, after all, our main mission as parents; however no one tells you exactly what to do it so it is all done by trial and error. Their lives are filled with Firsts that begin at birth and continue throughout their life. The Firsts are the things we tend to remember or make note of somewhere– good and bad. Whether it be the first time they roll over, say their first word, take their first step, get their first boo-boo or their first heartbreak. We are there helping them celebrate or console their pain. That is just what we do as parents. As they grow and mature more Firsts come and go and they grow up right before out eyes.
Then we come to a point in our lives that the Firsts come less and less frequently. That is where I find myself now. I have entered a year full of Lasts; Justin’s last first day of school, last ACT test and last days as a minor. I remember all too well saying that “I have years before I have to…” Now I cannot say that anymore. The years have come and gone and my time is running out to make an impression on my son. No one tells you in the beginning exactly what to do; sure they have a lot of suggestions and ideas, but all in all it is a grand experiment. We must decide for ourselves just what fits and what doesn’t– all the while praying that we don’t mess up this tiny person too bad. No pressure there. Through the years, through all the Firsts AND through all the Lasts, one thing is constant; the love I have for him has never wavered. I will always love him, regardless of what he does or doesn’t do; if he knows that then I have succeeded as best I could. No one could ever accuse me of being a perfect parent, but no one can say that I haven’t loved him fiercely and actively. Did I get it all right? Absolutely not, but that is OK. Why? Well, because there has never been that perfect parent — ever!
Whether I like it or not; whether I am ready for it or not — I have no choice. Here we go!! I must come to terms with many things too numerous to list here, but I am up for the challenge. After all, I am a Mom! I will pull myself together, endure the inevitable tough times and relive the memories from the last 17+ years – all while celebrating a year of achievements and successes. I have been given a priceless gift –the responsibility of raising a once helpless newborn baby boy and watching him become an intelligent, caring, independent young man with a bright future. I am excited to see just where his life takes him from here. What will he wind up doing? I really don’t know, but I DO know I will be there to help him celebrate victory or console him through pain. That is the beauty of the circle of life.
Let’s see what’s next…Thanks for reading!