Eleven years ago I became a mama. It was a crazy time – a total whirlwind that felt like a blur at the time and even more of one looking back on it now.
I had always wanted kids – dreamed of being a mother – and in all of those dreams I had a little girl. So when my first little girl arrived in her dramatic and unexpected way – I was so relieved. This was my literal dream come true.
And having one little girl (and then two!) has been a joy. It has lived up in so many ways to my lofty ideals. It hasn’t been all sunshine and roses of course…but for the goods have far, FAR outweighed the bad.
Now that little girl of mine – the one that first made me a mother – is officially a tween and well on her way to full teenager-hood. And I find myself unprepared.
Not so much for the fact that puberty is on the horizon but for the fact that she is no longer a child. It feels like it happened in an instant.
She gets things now that she didn’t use to. She understands nuances and subtleties in conversation that oh so recently went right over her lovely little blonde head.
Our conversations are much more profound and complex. Her friendships are evolving and changing and emotions are running high.
Boys factor in.
She feels things so deeply and wounds so easily. Her ego is growing faster than I am able to try to temper it.
She is making decisions now that could affect the rest of her life. She is making choices that have much longer reaching implications.
I remember turning eleven. I can remember my school and my house and my friends and my interests. What I don’t remember is feeling any more mature or grown up. I don’t think I even realized that it was a time of great change and evolution for me.
But it was of course. Just like it is for my girl.
And while I am loving the woman that I can see her becoming and feel great pride in the fact that I have helped to mold and shape her…I can’t help but feel like stopping time.
To go back to when she was just a little girl, climbing into my lap with a book, snuggling into me with her lamby and blankie in hand and saying “read to me mummy.”
For now I will just enjoy the fact that she still holds my hand out in public and says “I Love You” in front of her friends at school.