The past week I've been going through photos while preparing for Justin's graduation open house. Let me just say, there's nothing like making a graduation picture board to stir up all the memories of yesterdays gone by.
Justin at birth. Justin at 3. Justin without his front tooth. Justin riding a zoo turtle with his cuz.
Those early days are a distant haze, and all that's left are a handful of memories and lots of photos. I loved when he was a newborn, tiny, cuddly, and totally helpless in my arms. I loved when he crawled across the floor, turning to flash me a smile. I loved when he was 5 and said the funniest things. I didn't so much love the 3s, not with any of my boys, but that's another blog.
I have to say, though, much to my surprise, that I have enjoyed the teenage years. Now, it's early days--though Justin is 18, I have a 15 yr-old and a 12 year-old, so please leave me room to change my mind next week.
But, so far? The teen years have been pretty awesome. And yes, Girl Moms, I know it's because they're boys. I consider this relatively peaceful time of life my payoff for the toddler years when I didn't sit down for five years straight.
And even now, I'm not saying there aren't those, um, moments. Yes, there are those. Some of them pretty stressful. But in between the tri-annual Battle for Independence, the Because I Said So Treaty we have in place has been largely effective. Best of all, I enjoy our boys' personalities--and they are each so different! They're old enough to reason with, to have interesting conversations with, and they get our jokes. (Okay, so they roll their eyes, but still.)
True, the worries are bigger, the stakes are higher, and the lack of control will drive you to your knees. But every now and then, when your nearly-grown kid does something that makes you stand a little taller, when you see all your hard work, all the prayers, paying off?
If you're a parent, what's your favorite age or stage (so far)? If you're not a parent, what do you think your favorite stage will be?