Yesterday my youngest child celebrated his 20th birthday. TWENTIETH. My youngest child is TWENTY.
......give me a minute, I need to catch my breath......
Yep, true story. Seth turned 20 yesterday, and it is the weirdest thing. It really doesn't feel like it's been that long since he was a chubby, happy, curly-headed baby. Or an ornery toddler. Or even an awkward pre-teen, worried about ever finding a girlfriend and losing his "puppy fat". That adorable little guy is now a tall, handsome, awesome man with a huge heart, a wicked sense of humor and more talent and intelligence than any one person needs. (Oh, and a really cute girlfriend too!) It just blows my mind.
Of course you see it coming. It's hard to miss the shifts in attitude and perspective that come as they mature (not to mention the facial hair :-/ ). Still, every now and then you look at your kid and think, when did this happen? When did my little boy or girl become this fantastic adult? The reality of their adulthood just sort of smacks you sideways, and you realize that all the changes haven't been in your kids. You change too.
Hubby and I will always be Dad and Mom. That's a fact. But Mom and Dad are different now, and they need us in different ways. Our kids are all intelligent, resourceful, competent people; they can take care of themselves. Now our roles are more about guidance and support. They're making their own decisions about their lives, and that's exactly as it should be, but they still come to us for advice and suggestions and general cheerleading....and that is also as it should be. One thing Jon and I really enjoy is having big family discussions with the kids about all sorts of things - they're all so dang smart and funny, and they really have tremendous insight in a lot of areas. It is so much fun to listen to them and watch them interact with each other, and see how they've grown and changed. We've been blessed with our kids, and that blessing grows as they do.
So even though it's very strange to realize that we no longer have a teenager in the house, it's also very good. We're proud of you, Seth, and the wonderful man you're becoming. We love you!!