Monday, November 30, 2009

Stages

You know you've had a good day when you look in the mirror at bedtime and there is red and blue glitter on your face.

***

It has not escaped me that I am a very blessed and fortunate woman to be 40 years old and have a preschooler. Whenever I go in to help in her preschool, I see all the younger parents in there and I think, wow. I am so super glad that I have my daughter NOW. And that I have gotten to experience the amazing blessings of being a mother both at age 20 and at 40 and all the years in between. I've been a Mom for 2 decades now; I have adult and near-adult kids who can drive and cook and make many of their own decisions and I still have a little one who wants to snuggle with me in bed in the morning. Incredible.

Twenty years ago I was pregnant with my very first baby. I was 20 years old and had no idea (as an only child) how my world was about to change. My son was the most miraculous thing I had ever experienced; I still remember the faint blonde fuzz atop his soft newborn head and how it smelled as I pressed my face against it. I remember holding my second very-much-wanted son in my arms only a year and a half later and thinking I could never ask for anything more in my life... could never be happier than having that fat little baby finally in my arms. A third, a fourth, and within five years I had a passel of delightful children and because I was in my mid-20's, I had all the energy in the world to raise them.

There were tough times, there would bad times. There was a divorce and me raising those kids alone in my late 20's and there were all kinds of difficulties in between, but overall there was an enrapturing beauty... the love I had for those children, the trips to the ocean, the camping, the baseball games, the concerts. Such an amazing experience.

And then came my little girl. Fifteen years after her oldest brother, she came as tiny and precious as could be. A gift, a true gift to me, when I thought my baby days were long past. I was a mother of *older* children. Independent children. I was in that stage of life where the kids are growing up and you can pretty much go about whatever career or hobbies or activities you want to because you don't have a kid hanging on your leg or a diaper to change or even a bedtime story to tell. Then she came and changed my life. I was a new mother once again, but with a whole new perspective, which included a whole lot more insightful parenting and a new depth of appreciation for every fleeting moment of her childhood. I have far less energy parenting at 40 than I did at 20, but I am terribly grateful for the opportunity to have experienced both.

I wash the glitter from my face when I look in the mirror. I see wrinkles I didn't have when my oldest was in preschool, but I see the same joyous smile because I still know that any day involving preschool glitter is a blessed day indeed.

I am off to bike. Don't avoid life. Embrace the glitter, whatever that may be, in YOUR life.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Grandmas get glitter too. I"m not sure I could handle being a mom at 44 but I sure can handle being a grandma. Bring on the glitter and the cookie dough and the mucky hands and the big sloppy kisses.


Here's to little kids
Barb

Mzchef said...

Thanks for reminding me to appreciate all the gifts life gives you!

Losing 100 said...

Beautiful post. I have 5 amazing kids, and I finally feel like I'm getting the hang of it. (now that I'm 37) They are such a blessing. I love seeing my 15 year old becoming a man, and watching my one year old as she learns to understand the words I'm saying and the world around her. Great reminder of the blessing of motherhood.

Margie M. said...

With all the junk going on in the world...we can feel the blessings of those precious people we've brought into the world. You sound like a great mom.

Diane Fit to the Finish said...

I too am an older mom, and I wouldn't trade it for anything. My oldest is 19, and my youngest is only 2! It's a wonderful experience - glitter and all!

Jane said...

you're amazing..it is really like reading my mom's thoughts (no kids for me yet) and I can tell you that your kids know how you feel and will love you forever for it.

jenn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
~*~ Beckie-Lynn ~*~ said...

What a blessing kiddos are... and what a joy for you to experience "the best of both worlds"! I'm so happy for you!!!!!

jenn said...

What a beautiful post. Thanks for reminding me of the important things in life.

screwdestiny said...

It's always interesting to me to read about parents who seem to so love their life with their children and look at them as this amazing gift since that thinking is so foreign to me.

This was a nice post to read.

NaN said...

I had my third child when my two older kids (boy and girl)were 12 and 15...same loving husband though! I was 39 when she was born and oh yes, what a blessing. Ironically, when I was pregnant I never gained over 20 pounds and lost the weight quickly! Now my kids are all grown and I have 2 grandsons. I enjoy your reflective posts.

aimeeinak said...

Your kids are lucky to have such a great Mom. :-)

Jennifer said...

This was your most beautiful post to date, Lyn. I loved it!! It made me smile, and tear up. You seem like an amazing mommy, to your little girl & your older boys just the same! Here's to glitter & never growing up, no matter how old we are. :)

Being a mom is truly the best gift that I've ever been given in my life. I only have one child (he's 10), but he is amazing, and I thank God for him every single moment. Thank you for posting this today...it was so sweet.

karen@fitnessjourney said...

Awww, I miss the pre-school years.

spunkysuzi said...

It's always a good thing to stop and realize just what is important :=)

allthingsjuice said...

What a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing your heart with us.

Karen in Tennessee said...

Somehow I missed this blog entry before but I am so glad I got to see it today. What a beautifully written tribute to your children and your years as a mother!!!