Friday, April 25, 2014

My Teenagers


Being a parent is the scariest job in the world. I left the corporate world 13 years ago to be a "stay at home mom". Little did I know that managing a department of eight adults would be a snap compared to parenting four children. Those two little kids I came home to care for are now 19 and 17, and we have added two more.

I laugh now when new moms say they will stay home with the kids until they go to school and then go back to work. I cannot even imagine sitting at a job all day worrying about how my school-aged kids are doing in this world. Bandaids do not heal the wounds of teenagers. They need daily guidance. They need you to be at home when they come home from school. You need to see so much of your teenagers that you know in an instant when something is not right that requires you to push until you find out what it is. I can tell within seconds of when my teenagers walk in the back door whether something is wrong. I wouldn't know that if I wasn't here. Dawson's friends all come to our house to hang out in the afternoons and on the weekends. Why? Because we are here and we have taken an interest in them as though they were our own kids. They know we have a safe place for them to be teenage boys.

Every decision I have made in the past 13 years has haunted me as to whether it has been the right one for my kids. Of course they haven't all been. I have been learning this parenting thing right along with them. As they have approached the ages where they are ready to make the decisions about what they will do with their futures, I have agonized over whether I have taught them enough, guided them enough, prepared them enough.

At some point you have to just let them start to make their own decisions and trust that you have done all that you can. I think I have. I have loved them with everything I have attempting to make every decision with their best interest at heart. Rick and I have sacrificed so much for their happiness and their well-being, and we just have to trust that it has all been enough.

Kyndal is over half way through with her cosmetology education. In just a few short months she will be in a salon building her clientele and moving forward with her career. Her and Collin have been together for over two years and they will, no doubt, get married and have children in the not-so-far-off future. I am so proud of her. I hear her talk about her plans and she knows what she wants and what she needs to do to get there. Of course I still worry about her every single day. But, I trust her and I know that she will do fine.

And now Dawson is getting ready to be a senior in high school. He has kind of gone back and forth about what he wants to do with his future, but he knows that he wants to stay here in this small town where we live and marry his small town high school sweetheart. Just in the past few weeks he has begun to narrow down his chosen career path. And just this week he and I formulated a plan to complete it. He has worked to receive an A+ scholarship that will allow him to obtain an associate's degree at a nearby community college for free. He plans to major in Construction Technology and go on to receive his Pipe Welding certification. He wants to work in some level of construction, hopefully following in the footsteps of my dad's business. And he is so excited about his plans! He's telling everyone who will listen what he is planning to do.


I look at these two little kids who are all grown up now and I think, "We did it!" We have been successful. These kids are making smart plans to do the things they know they will enjoy, are thinking along the lines of contentment instead of "making it big", and will likely marry their high school sweethearts. They are doing it right.

I am so blessed and so happy for my kids. Their futures look bright and I am thrilled for them and excited to see their lives unfold. (Almost) two down and two to go.


4 comments:

  1. Yay! You almost did it! It sounds like you did a fantastic job parenting and are reaping the rewards. It's so hard to give them up though isn't it?

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  2. I love everything about this post. Congrat's Mama! Been there - Done that - still doing it with you. :P

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  3. It is great if you can stay home. However many can't afford to or are doing it all on their own as a single parent. I admire stay at home and working moms we are all in this journey together and need to support each other.

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  4. You are a wonderful mama with awesome kids!
    My husband pushed me into becoming a stay at home parent, and I truly believe it's the best decision for our family. I had plans to go back to work after Lily was in first grade, but we all know how quickly plans change! Liam came along (surprise!) and my plans changed. I know I have to be here for him, as well as his older siblings. Yes, we could live in a much bigger house if I worked, but I realize time with my children is the most important thing.

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We all know that in this crazy world of homeschooling, we need all the (adult) support we can get. Please leave a comment if you so wish!