All I did was blink.

Very fitting that my inaugural blog be about birthdays. My sweet baby James is about to turn thirteen in a matter of days. To him it is a huge milestone, to me it is a huge boulder that I tripped over somewhere along the way. I have a teenager? That absolutely cannot be correct. He was just starting kindergarten yesterday, right?

James on his first day of school posing with his sister.

Unfortunately for me, the reality is this. For as much as this is an exciting and chapter turning point in his life, it is to mine as well. Not only am I having to come to terms with the fact that he is growing into a young man with a faint shadow of peach fuzz right before my very eyes, but I am no longer the mommy of a little boy. I am the mom of a teenager that walks two steps behind me in public and would be mortified if I grabbed his hand in a parking lot to save him from the little old lady driving the big tank of a car that could have flattened him. Not really…she was only driving like 5 MPH, but still… I saved him from harm.

As parents that is what we are primarily focused on isn’t it? Protecting them from the things that may cause them harm. We carry epi-pens to avoid allergic reactions, we insist on helmets while they ride bikes, we give the talks and make the rules and set the stage for all the what if’s and the unplanned trap doors in life…We plan and prepare ourselves silly and then hope and pray each and every night that it’s enough. Enough to carry them over to the next chapter.

So, there we are. The beginning of a new chapter on many different levels. A good place to start this journey together you and I. This is the absolute best place to begin because I’ve never been here before, it’s unchartered territory. I hope to put out engaging stories. to entertain you, but along the way I want to educate myself and you if you’re open to it.

It’s all so ironic to me that this is the most balanced I have ever been in my life. If you are a good friend of mine you are probably snickering about my self proclamation of being balanced. That isn’t what I mean. Nor would I ever make such a brave and completely untrue claim. 🙂

Balanced in the way that everything to me is leveling out at this stage of my life, and for a very short time will be balanced. One day soon my children start making friends, plans and choices all on their own and I will be nowhere around but in their spirit, mind and heart. All I can do is hope they make the right ones, and support them when they rise or fall. Watch them make mistakes, get hurt, fall down along the way and duct tape my hands behind my back to keep from rescuing them before they learn the lesson.

I try to always remember to approach those moments like teaching Ansley to swing. You know…push off… legs in…legs out. Higher and higher you get. One day at the park when she had gotten really good she scared the crap out of me by jumping out. She hit the ground hard and as I ran to her I actually saw a movie in my head that involved blood and a fractured skull. What I found was a dirt encrusted girl with a huge grin across her face. I asked her why in the world she did that, and that it frightened me. Surely she must have known she was going to hit the ground! She just looked at me in wonderment and plainly said, “But Mommy, I had to try it to see if I could fly, and for a moment I did, so it was worth it.” Lessons work both ways. Your never too old to be schooled by a five-year old.

We do the best we can in the moment that we are in. We constantly change our plans, our minds, our directions. Down the road it won’t matter what home my children will go to if something happens to us as parents. Instead talk will turn to what type of home we as parents will go to. The protection, hopes and dreams will now belong to our children. I hope as parents we will be happy, safe and healthy enough to enjoy the next chapters that are yet to come for them. This is a cross roads of sorts. Instead of playdates, it will be prom. Instead of the best daycare it will be the best colleges.

There’s a lot of years left for these two children of mine, I’m not saying they will leave the nest tomorrow or even the day, week, month or year after…but change is in the air, and all I did was blink. ~ Kimberly




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