The journey.

21 07 2011

A complete 180. That is what my son has done. On his journey to adulthood, he is approaching the teen years at a mad pace. Suddenly, I am horribly embarrassing to him. My arm, casually slung about his shoulder is an act that warrants shrugging it off, a glare and walking away. You see, I laugh too loud. I can’t dance. My jokes tank. I have ugly wrinkles and jiggly legs that are obviously so repugnant, he finds it necessary to inform me of my disgraceful human form in some sort of desperate need to distance himself from me.

I am not even worthy of a celebratory fist-bump.

This has happened so quickly. I went from the top of the list to the very bottom within weeks. For the most part, it is funny and we do joke about this a lot. I remind him to be kind. Even his mother has feelings, you know.

He hangs with his Dad. He seeks him out, he watches Dan’s moves. He stands like him. He adopts his mannerisms. He is identifying with the hidden man inside of himself by disconnecting with me and cementing the bond with his Dad. Dan can do no wrong. Nick includes himself in minute activities only to be closer to him, like standing around the truck talking to other guys, hands in pockets. Leaning casually against the truck, taking it all in, these manly ways of conversation.

As he should.

I cannot begrudge my son this important move in life. After all, the delicious baby boy I gave birth to will one day be the man I hope him to be. Solid, kind, caring, courageous. He needs to do this. He needs to move away from Mama Love. He needs to define himself through the masculine world in order to become the man he needs to become.

Dan is worthy of the fist-bump, complete with “blowing it up” too.

As much as it hurts my heart to let this go, I see the joy and light in my husband’s eyes when our son only wants to hang out with him. I forgive my child the little digs at my unfortunate error of being me because I know truly that he doesn’t mean it. It’s just simple biology.

Plus, he has to drive me crazy so I’ll want to let him go when it’s time to leave the nest.

But still, there are times when he chooses to sit close to me on the couch. His hugs are still just as tight, even lingering sometimes for an extra few seconds or so.  I am still needed and loved, only now in less blatant ways.  I take it all with gratitude. I will always be his Mom….

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5 responses

21 07 2011
Melissa

Oh Kris these are such bitter sweet years aren’t they? Allie crawled into bed with us the other night after a huge thunder clap and we all just lay there in a big old family huddle. I cherish these times as they are coming fewer and farther in between. I miss all those nights she only wanted to sleep with me instead of her own bed. I go to kiss her sweet little cheek and she pulls away from me and calls me a freak. She can’t deal with PDA’s from her mom anymore. I know what you are feeling. (((hug)))

21 07 2011
Kris

It’s truly the hardest part of parenting; letting go of our little ones and letting them grow up. Thank God I have my friends who understand and commeriserate with me. xoxo

21 07 2011
Rhaya

Kris, you have the uncanny ability to capture essence of life in your writing. Today’s post makes me sad because I know my turn is coming as well. I’m aleady noticing the half smiles where there used to be open and full ones, and I am catching myself with the realization that for the first time I don’t know what my boy is thinking sometimes. Like you, I know it is healthy but at the same time it can be hard. Thank you, it’s nice to know I’m not alone. ~R

21 07 2011
Kris

Thanks Rhaya! We’re all in this together, learning how to let go…. Good friends like you can be a godsend as we all go through it…. xoxo

3 08 2011
Kim

Man these kids take us for a ride! I am not quite there yet with my boy….but it is imminent. Nathaniel is still little, but I do see those hormones kicking in. He is taking more of an interest in his Dad every day….which really brings me joy. All those years of being number one were great…but sometimes exhausting. Now if Bruce gets to experience this, I will TRY not to be jealous. I will celebrate their newfound connections. I will rejoice that my boy has such a good man to lead him into adulthood. I will (gulp) let him go where he needs to go. When I am looked at with disdain, I will try to remember how much he worshipped me all those sweet years. Through it all, I will remember what you said once Kris…whenever someone wins an award, olympic medal, some type of accolade….they most often start with “Thanks Mom!!!”

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