Nineteen years ago if you were to tell me that the most emotional part of parenting wouldn’t happen until my children’s senior year in high school, I would have never believed you. But it’s true. What I experienced with Sidney has started all over again with G3. I am a wreck … and I’m elated.
Since August I have been abundantly aware that everything we share can either be a first … or a last. First college application completed. Last high school registration day. Both lists seem endless. I oscillate between utter joy and complete sadness. And the questions … oh … my … God … the questions! Will he be close to home for college or will he be faraway? That’s just one! So much is up in the air … but yet somehow everything seems set on a course that is moving so fast that it’s overwhelming. It’s all so good. Yet it’s all so sad.
When I look at G3 I see a strong and brilliant young man. He is tender and kind. A true gentleman. And I couldn’t be prouder of him. I have no doubt that he is ready to take this next step in his life.
But as a mother I can’t help but also see the little baby that I held in my arms for the very first time all those years ago. I see the little boy who held on tightly to his Thomas the Train everywhere we went. I remember his sweet giggles as I read him his favorite book, Green Eggs and Ham. I hear the first time he said, “I did it!”. And it all breaks my heart.
I love my children so much. Being their mother and raising them has been the greatest gift I will ever know. So I’m going to try to cut myself some slack for being a big cry baby. I thought I was crazy when I went through all this with Sid. But I’m not. My heart and mind were just being pulled in more directions than I could count. It hurt. It was wonderful. And I was a mess. And now that I know what I’m in for I’ve promised myself to enjoy the ride. To weep when I feel the need. To celebrate when I can’t contain the happiness. And to just love on G3 the only way I know how. Unconditionally, genuinely and from the very depths of my soul.
Today G3 has another Tae Kwon Do test, he is working on his 4th Degree Black Belt. He is still several years away from attaining it and these “mini” (7-hour) tests have probably become old hat to him. I like them because they have to run a 5K to start the test. They ask parents to run too. So of course, I do. He almost never stays with me, but I’m there. It’s my little way to be a part of something that has so profoundly shaped his life.
But today may very well be another last. G3 may be away at college the next time testing comes around. He may walk away from Tae Kwon Do for a while. Or perhaps pick it up wherever he goes to school. I’m honestly not sure. And that’s OK.
Today I will stay in the moment. I will be proud of how far he has come and will be thankful for the opportunities that he has had to partake in this martial art for the past 12 years. I will be grateful for his health and abilities.
And I will also look forward to the unknown. I will be excited to see what plans G3 maps out for himself. I have confidence that whatever decisions he makes will lead him to a life filled with much success and happiness. I will be content knowing that my son is doing everything he can to grow into the man he is dreaming of. And when no one is looking, I will cry just a little.
Well, I hope you all have a day where you wouldn’t want it any other way!!!