My son looks like a perfect angel to me as I watch him sleep on the couch this morning. Fifteen years old, his chiseled facial features look flawless as he lays there with his eyes closed. I smile and my heart breaks a little as I catch a glimpse of unruly, random whiskers sticking out of his chin. He’s my baby. Please stop growing up so fast. Note to self…add razors to the shopping list.
The poor guy – he missed his prom this past weekend due to this ungodly virus attacking my children one week at a time . My heart ached for him as he had to let his date know he couldn’t go. It’s so easy as adults to forget how agonizing it is to miss out on things as a teenager. Heck I still hate missing out. I am a strong woman and will fight through anything. But when my children have to struggle, it hurts me. If I am honest I’d have to say, I don’t want them to have to fight through anything. I don’t want them to hurt. I want to fix everything for them. I know I can’t, and I know it isn’t always best for them, so I don’t.
Luke wants to join the military when he is of age. Should I just color my hair gray now, or let it happen naturally when he heads off to boot camp? In the meantime, drivers’ ed is this summer. I’ll get a head start on the gray then. Motherhood can be so. damn. hard.
I don’t want to let them go. Sometimes I wish I could be that mom whose kids get on her nerves, and she dreams of the day her house is empty. I’m just not her. I love it all. I smile when I see their clothes on the bathroom floor – not because they are the sloppiest people I have ever known, (they are), but because it reminds me that they are kids. I can’t get angry at some clothes on the floor, when in that pile I might see the cutest, tiny shopkins socks from my daughter. Or my son’s Gap hoodie that he looks super “cool” in as he places the hood on just right. On a side note, has anyone else noticed how kids only put the hoods halfway on their heads? We didn’t tie our shoelaces so I can’t argue it. Anyway…I am keenly aware that some day I will have no cute little clothes to pick up off the floor.
Sometimes they leave a dozen glasses with unidentified, hardened liquids, sitting on the table in the basement where they watch tv and play video games. I don’t go down there much for fear of odd odors – but when I do, I know I will be coming up with many glasses to wash. Most likely by the time this happens, I have already added “glasses” (next to the razors) to my shopping list, wondering where in the hell did all of our glasses go?
Maybe something is wrong with me, but I truly don’t get angry about the dirty glasses full of possible science experiments. I probably get distracted by the joy of knowing I can scratch something off my shopping list, so I forget that it is pretty ridiculous that three teenagers couldn’t manage to carry up their glasses for the past week. They walked up to get more drinks anyway, right??
Instead, after gasping not only at the strange unidentified odors that I feared, but also at the shock of seeing my pretty Pier One glasses covering the coffee table, I have a quiet laugh with myself. I mean come on – kids are funny. It is such a short stage in life when you can be a lazy slug and someone will adoringly clean up after you. (before you judge…I do have them clean up the basement of doom after I find the messes)
Today I was able to catch up with my sweet teenage boy a bit. I’ll admit it – I was glad he missed school today. We never get alone time anymore, and sometimes I just want to check in. I want to know how his friendships are going, how his new girlfriend is, and has he changed his mind about the military yet. (I don’t really ask, and no he hasn’t)
As we sit and chat, I tease him about how he used to sit in my lap and we would rock for hours. He’d complain if my hair was up in a ponytail because he liked to hold it in his little hand while we rocked. He laughs and shakes his head at me when I tell him this stuff. I laugh too, but deep down I am aching, wondering where the hell all of that time went. For mothers, it often feels quicker with our boys. They tend to become men overnight, and the hugs and kisses become a little more awkward, a little more quickly than with our girls. (especially when their friends are around)
Tonight as I am sitting in bed and he is in the basement dirtying glasses, I received a text from him. Yes we text when on different floors, and yes I go to bed before him. He asked if I could throw his laundry in if he brought the hamper down. Sure, I’d be happy to. I am not happy to get out of bed, but I am happy to clean my son’s clothes. Don’t worry, I will teach him how in due time. For now, let me enjoy making his day by getting that Gap hoodie Downy fresh. Let me enjoy the, “Thanks mom,” I will hear in a voice that got deep way too quickly. Let me enjoy making him feel loved and secure before he completes his journey into manhood, and leaves me wondering how it happened so fast.