The time for making resolutions has long since passed but we are marking an anniversary- our first birthday celebration for Grown and Flown–and that gives us cause for reflection. From our first baby steps last January to today, we have learned much about blogging and media, met wonderful people who now inhabit our world, and above all else, come to appreciate you, our readers.
We thumbed through our first year of posts and came up with a more than a few parenting lessons we learned and wrote about this year. Parenting teens and young adults has been both a wonderful and eye-opening experience. We are just learning and would like to do so, right alongside you. So jump in. Give us your thoughts, with or without your name, and let us know what matters to you.
1. We may have been moms for two decades but that doesn’t mean that the pleasures of parenthood don’t still catch us by surprise. We have learned much from our kids as we showed them the world and then they returned the favor. Is there any greater delight than learning from our children?
2. Note to self should be on our bedside table and used as a good reminder that the teenage years are fleeting. Even when our kids are challenging, we don’t want to rush them out of this stage of life. It is their job as teenagers to push back. WE can grow our skin a bit thicker to manage.
3. We have been parents long enough to know that, whatever the stresses are now, we will look back on these years with rose-colored glasses. Yet with just a quick glance backward we look forward to our life as parents of wonderful adults and figuring out this stage of parenthood, just as we did the others.
4. For both of us, these years have been training for the empty nest, a time when our relationship with our children will depend far more heavily on our shared interests and deep bond of love as we let go of our day-to-day lives together.
5. None of us leave our phones far from hand which means the camera is close by, too. We want to remember to take photos of our kids just hanging out and being themselves and what better time there is than now, during the oh-so-long January break from college. Otherwise, all we will have are the graduations, concerts and ceremonies and not nearly enough of the 100% genuine them.
6. We have watched the sibling bond grow over many years and hope that time and distance leave it fully intact. We have tried to teach our children that family and friends, both old and new, are life’s true blessings. It is a lesson for all of us.
7. As our families travel toward the empty nest, a process that lasts about as long as our kid’s early childhood, we will reflect with gratitude, and perhaps a few tears, as our last child leaves our homes, that we were given this time with them. From fallible parents come wonderful children, thank goodness!
8. We taught them they could never quit and it would be just a touch too hypocritical not to follow the lesson ourselves. So here we are at the end of what has been a wonderful year of reading your comments, your emails and your blogs. If you have a favorite parenting post feel free to attach it below.
We have come to recognize one thing about being moms it is that we are never done and the learning process continues even as our children move through their teen years and become adults and our relationships evolve. At every step we are still learning because fortunately, parenting never ends!