My first born turns thirteen tomorrow! Holy cannoli, where did the time go??
Ok look, the truth is that I have never been that mom who asks “where did the time go?” It’s been thirteen years, and I am here to tell you that it seems like thirteen years, but that doesn’t mean that my heart isn’t being pulled apart at the thought of my baby growing up.
One thing being a mother has taught me is how possible it is to have two or more emotions flood you to the brim, at the same time. I have found the parenting journey (cringing as I type that. Parenting journey??? Geez. Who have I become?) to be more fulfilling, humbling and exhausting than I expected. With thirteen comes a break in the physical labor of parenting, and a sharp uptick in the mental toil.
I’m ready. (ish)
I know the next years will probably be a bit, shall we say, rocky. As my boy treads in the bracing water of adolescence, I belly flop into the river of peri-menopause, in my Target swim skirt. It’s new territory for both of us, so at least we have that in common. In fact, we are probably sharing more now than we have in a dozen years, back when I nursed him through the night, providing him with milk in exchange for those blessed calming hormones that got me through. I remember in the morning we would wake smiling at each other (no memories of the tense 3:00am cursing under my breath. Oh yes, we’ve all done it), and I’d have just a moment with him before the veil lifted.
Please pardon that little stroll down memory lane that leads,
as you can see,
A side affect of waning estrogen is that I occasionally lose my train of though or forget where I was going. Actually, it probably does lead somewhere, somewhere very profound, only my glasses are steamed up from a hot flash so I can’t see where the hell I’m headed!
Oh, and that that rage thing? That’s hormonal too. My adolescent child deals with this temporary problem by playing his guitar cranked “to eleven” or doing backflips off the couch, while I head to my trusty key board and type into the void.
Not to change the subject, but hey, you guys! It’s World Poetry Day! And it just so happens that I have a poem to share here, by one of my all-time faves, Anne Sexton.
She was a troubled soul (understatement) but God, could she get to the heart of things. In keeping with this post’s theme, thus far, please enjoy:
A thousand doors ago
when I was a lonely kid
in a big house with four
garages and it was summer
as long as I could remember,
I lay on the lawn at night,
clover wrinkling under me,
the wise stars bedding over me,
my mother’s window a funnel
of yellow heat running out,
my father’s window, half shut,
an eye where sleepers pass,
and the boards of the house
were smooth and white as wax
and probably a million leaves
sailed on their strange stalks
as the crickets ticked together
and I, in my brand new body,
which was not a woman’s yet,
told the stars my questions
and thought God could really see
the heat and the painted light,
elbows, knees, dreams, goodnight.
Let’s just sit with that for a second. She’s so good.
Ok, next up, a contest…
One thing that real bloggers with lots of readers do is have contests. In the spirit of fake it ’til you make it, I am going to have my own Tiny Contest! Please email me directly, or leave in the comments below, or post on this blog’s FaceBook page, a piece of advice you really wish someone had given you when you were thirteen. The first person to do so will get their very own free copy of Anne Sexton: The Complete Poems, sent directly to you! You Can’t Win If You Don’t Enter, as they say, but let’s just face it, your odds are pretty good. (Hope you don’t mind that it’s gently used, since I just found it on my book shelf next to another one of the exact same book. I have an Amazon addiction. It’s a disease).
Maybe I’ll press a flower in it, seeing as how it’s now officially Spring, and all 🙂
4 thoughts on “In which I realize that I am more like a thirteen year old than I thought (plus a contest!)”
When I was 13? Oh boy…it’s ok to still be a kid. Body hair is not as embarrassing as your friends think it is. You don’t know it all and you never will…
Love your blog. Makes me smile outside and in.
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Winner winner chicken dinner! If you’d like the book, email me your address at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll pop it in the mail! If not, I won’t take it personally 🙂
oh Maggie-so, so, good
what are you doing looking into my peri-menopausal, son just turned 12 years old soul-and then choosing a night from Anne Sexton, #childhood, #southernstarssummernights.
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Thank you, Rebecca. So much. So. Much.
That’s all. It means a lot to me.