Recently, there was a shooting in my small town where 3 teenagers were wounded–including a classmate of my daughter’s. The morning that I heard that news, I was thinking about parenting and how difficult it can be, especially through the teenage years. As my children have reached the age of transition into adulthood, many feelings have been on my heart. Contemplating all of this, I sat down and this poem poured from my heart. . .
Being a mommy is the best gift on earth
Snuggling sweet little ones, in awe as they nurse,
Getting to tuck in sweet babes to bed
Sneaking in one last pull off that delicious smelling head.
As they grow through the years, you grow too,
Learning how to parent differently from newborn to one, and one to two.
The years fly by, and you must adjust,
It goes from binkies and booties to eventually dinosaurs and pixie dust.
The babes snuggle a little less and fight to be independent more,
And things continue to change, from two to three, three to four and more.
As they age, the independence is nice,
They can pour a bowl of cereal, letting you sleep in once or twice.
Through the elementary years, babes still need Mommy,
But as the time flies, sometimes mommy is replaced with friends Julie or Tommy.
Seven becomes eight, and suddenly eight becomes thirteen,
And babes, out of nowhere, are suddenly hellbent on expressing themselves through their teens.
In mommyhood, the days are long and the years fly by fast,
And Mama starts waking up thinking of years past.
Hold on tightly, Mama, your work isn’t yet done,
Those teenagers need you just as much now as when they were one.
Fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, and more…
Mama, hang on, they might show it less, but they love you for sure.
Don’t try to be their best friend, they still need structure, rules, discipline, and such,
Stay present and involved, they need this so much.
Know their friends, ask where they’re going, don’t let the babes rule the home,
Then when seventeen becomes eighteen, the law says they’re full grown.
The hard work is over, you must trust you did well,
Even though getting babes through the teens can feel like hell.
Know that your lessons and love are deep in babe’s heart,
Rest easy, Mommy, no longer a babe, their adult life starts.
You worked tirelessly, and the memories you’ll cherish,
Times may change, but that love and those memories, they never perish.
Hang in there, mommies. Childhood goes so fast. I know the days can be long and hard, but one day you’ll realize that your little one nursed for the last time, asked to be picked up for the last time, and got one last bedtime story from you. Cherish the moments you have written you have them, because they’re gone so fast.