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How are you? I am well. So blessed. Lots of stuff going on though. I didn’t get that promotion. My work is going well and I talked to someone about being put on a special project in Q3/Q4, still, it was a disappointment. Lots of introspection there. And two dear friends have been going through a terrible time. Heavy burden, even though it’s not my burden, because I love them.
And my life is changing. Eldest is well and thoroughly moved out of the house now. He was over for dinner the other night, and, in the course of the evening, thanked me for “kicking him out”. (This was no surprise ejection; our kids all know that they can live here till they turn 23 and then they need to go build their own lives; they’ve known this forever and they prepare accordingly.)He said it felt great to know that his parents trusted him to be out on his own. He told me it made him feel more capable and grown up knowing that his mom believed in his ability to take care of himself. My youngest is now 6’3″ and reads the Wall Street Journal across the table from me at breakfast. My enterprising daughter has three jobs (in an effort to graduate from college debt free) and she asks more complicated questions now. One evening, days ago, we had a huge bedtime discussion, she, my husband and I, about love and marriage and choosing your right person. My husband turned to me after she went back to her room and said, “I miss teaching them to tie their shoes.”
You may still be in the thick of it. Diapers or toddlers or grade schoolers. Enjoy this time. You are laying down the foundation for relationships that will last the rest of your life. Don’t let anyone tell you it can’t be done. Don’t let anyone make you believe they will inevitably get snarky and distant. Not true. Stay close. Stay strong in your boundaries and values. Tell them you love them. Be brave enough to be the fool on the playground, be brave enough to ban social media for your little ones.
We took the kids on a houseboat trip the other weekend. No cell phones, surprise trip. It was awesome. One night, we sat together in the gathering dark and they talked about childhood memories. Forts and fairy houses and walks around the lake. Pancake breakfasts and cupcake decorating. Daughter remembered that I cried at her third grade band concert when she surprised me with a solo. They talked about how they had smart phones and social media last of all their friends (second semester, senior year). They laughed about how someone once thought we were Amish because of our lack of electronic devices. Youngest did say that he “hated that job where you were gone all the time” (3-5 days a week, horrible job), but there was no complaining about my work beyond that.
The closeness there, Mamma, the love, priceless and beautiful beyond words.
I hope you have plans for some adventure this weekend. A walk to your local park. A pancake breakfast. Reading books out loud.
Ten, fifteen, twenty years from now, I pray you will be surrounded by your young adult children and overwhelmed with gratitude for the love that is there.
Go build it, one hug, one laugh, one little Lego brick at a time.