I'm Not Ready for This

Yesterday I took a shower. I do this most days while the boys are plugged into educational programming on PBS. When I came out of the bathroom, clean and refreshed, I found no boys watching TV. Mysterious, so I went to investigate. One of the advantages of a tiny house is that the investigation doesn't take long. I found Benton in his room building a castle for his vowels to live in--yes, his vowels. A,E, I, O, U and sometimes Y.
Nathaniel was still missing. I went into the kitchen where I noticed a stool in front of the cabinet where it hadn't been before. The silverware drawer hung open at an awkward angle. And there sat the baby in his highchair at the table with his milk in front of him, a green baby spoon clutched in his fist, and of course a container of Jell-o mostly eaten.
"What did you do, Nathaniel?" I asked the grinning boy before me.
And with all the pride and vocabulary of a baby finding his independence as an almost two-year old, he said, "Jell-o!"
You may have noticed from previous posts that I am having a little trouble with the concept of my baby growing up. I'm coming to the realization that I can't do a thing about it. He is a curious, inventive little boy and he is exploring his world more every day. He's getting out of bed by himself, trying to fix broken things, climbing on whatever he can find to nab a binkie from the top drawer, and now, getting his own Jell-o. He comes up with new words by the minute and chases his brother around the house trying to tackle him. He's silly, he's charming, he's stubborn, and he's opinionated.
I read these parenting books and articles about teaching and training and I think, "I want to do that!" I immediately get bogged down in the day to day and loose track of the fact that time is passing. They are learning weather I am actively teaching and training or not. Time to get on the ball, I guess.
When we drove Benton home from the hospital, I practically had a nervous breakdown. They make you take a test to get a drivers license, but they just give you this kid to take home?! Who came up with that plan?! I am not ready to be a parent!! I still don't feel ready. I certainly didn't come equipped to handle this almost two year old with a will strong enough to make my sister smirk.
As much as I dislike the idea of my guys growing up and leaving me for some other woman, I sure love being a part of the process. What about you? If your kiddos are already grown up, how in the world do you handle it--letting them run their own lives? If your kiddos are like mine and growing up lighting fast before your eyes, what are you loving and dreading about the process?


Katie Zuniga said...

You caused me to think of all the ways Alexander has changed since we have been here. That is three months today. Here they are...
Two naps to one
No more bottle
Bed instead of crib
Cold milk instead of warm
Eats dinner without help
Can reach door handle
Can reach light switches
Speaks two languages
That is a lot of change for three months!!

Aly sun said...

"Strong willed kids are like a firing gun. You just need to get the bullets firing in the right direction." -- Grammy

It's hard work, but rewarding. I think it might be easier with a girl because she can't charm me. No way. No how. I am a girl and I know her tricks. But Nathaniel? Those brown eyes make me melt every time. You need lots of prayer to stick to your discipline.

The Brothers said...

Every time my littlest begins to walk around and talk I get a new baby. It's kind of like a re-start button. It helps.
I probably could do with some professional help of some kind :)

Grandma Sherri said...

Alysun had a point I hadn't thought of just having girls, It was sure does seem harder with the boys- even the grands.
As to how you eventually handle letting them go- I believe God made the teen years difficult on purpose so parents would be so frustrated they would be more than willing to let them go! I suppose thats why some moms with sweet little boys that give them no problems end up still taking care of them when they are 40! Either that or their mothering instincts are much stronger than mine.

Tawny said...

I have a new blog address!


Marci said...

Whoa! Sherri, that's scary! 40? However badly I wanted my children to leave the nest, I THINK I've come to grips with the fact that Jeremiah never will be able to, and as long as our economy sucks, neither will Carissa and Josiah be able to. But there are advantages to a multi-generational household: not only the sharing of expenses and chores, but a closer sharing in each others lives. Although I'm looking forward to them marrying and moving out, I'm going to enjoy each minute they are still with me.