It never occurred to me my children would grow-up!
When I had my first baby it never occurred to me that he would grow up. Surely it was too far away to ever happen? And then very slowly and gradually it did. My three children are now all through school and heading off to university and beyond.
The house is still full but the role I hold as their mum has changed along the way. Obviously this is how it is meant to be, but it is not something I had put a lot of thought into.
I do so miss a lot of things about having small children. I can honestly say it was the happiest period of my life and I think that’s mainly because I was completely certain of my role and my goals. Every day was interesting, watching them grow, learn and change and the pride I felt as a Mum with my little gang close behind was wonderful.
The changing role of a mum
I am not sure when it happened, but somewhere along the way my role changed. I went from being involved in every decision, to watching them get on with their lives, making their own decisions and checking in with me only when they needed advice. I no longer had my little gang at my heels.
As a busy mum I didn’t really notice it happening and although they are still living in my care, they just need to know I am there, in case.
Of course I know this is how it is meant to be but I just need to GET USED TO IT!
It is an odd realisation and it’s like becoming someone else. A bit like when you have kids and you can’t remember yourself before you had them. You now can’t remember a life not being a mum.
Rose Tinted Glasses
At the same time there are advantages to being where I am today. Nature is cruel in the way it allows you to remember only the good bits. When I see an exhausted mum in the supermarket with a small child who is screaming and demanding some random thing they have decided they can’t live without, I remember the harder bits. But even situations like that become almost sweet in your rose tinted memory glasses. Time seems to have flown when you are out the other side, but it goes pretty slowly when you are in the thick of it!
Although I definitely miss the days when my children were totally mine (and believed every word I said) I also love the fact that we have made it. I got them all the way to adulthood and feel a sense of achievement and relief. My relationship with them is still as ‘Mum’ but they offer me something too now and are great company. They still want my opinion but I don’t have to find an answer if I don’t want to and they will still cope.
I don’t think all the reminders on social media telling us to enjoy every minute with our kids, because one day they will be gone, are very helpful. Time passes, kids grow up, it has happened forever. Even if you haven’t devoted every minute of your life to them, it changes nothing. Causing regret is pointless and thinking about it ending, whilst you are still doing it, is pointless too.
So just go with it. Enjoy the changing relationship because it proves things are happening as they should.
Some mornings I lie in bed and try to remember who is in the house
Gone are the days of hideously early mornings with young children. These days I lie in bed and try to remember who is at home and who is out! It is lovely letting go of responsibility after so long on duty.
Thank god for ‘findmyfriends’ because if I have forgotten where they are I simply look them up on my phone and check they made it there alive. I no longer have to get cross because it is now up to them what they do/spend/eat, but yet it isn’t an issue because they are grown-up and mature (ish).
The good thing is it takes so long and so much work to get them all grown-up, that you are naturally ready to slow down when it happens. Mother nature is amazing! But as I said I just need to GET USED TO IT.