Today is a pretty important day in my world.
Today my oldest daughter becomes a teenager.
That can’t be possible!
Oh yes, it is.
I have prepared for this birthday since the day she was born.
Everyone tells you how awful teenagers can be.
How snarly and mean they are.
How they hate you for five long years then you get them back when it’s all over.
You know, when they are in college.
And need money.
When you are holding your newborn baby, it is so hard to imagine them ever loathing you.
They need you so much and look at you with these eyes that show their complete faith and adoration in you.
When Annie was just a toddler and a very clingy one at that, I could never fathom that she would ever want to leave my side let alone not want to be around me that much.
But that time has come.
She is officially a teenager.
We have seen a tiny glimpse of the ugliness that the teen years can rear but nothing too awful.
Nothing that we hadn’t been warned of or told that would happen by now.
Of course, we are just dipping our toes in the water.
She still likes to be around us, which I’m told is huge.
She still likes to go shopping with me, have a family movie night and have lunch alone with one or both of us.
She has even chosen to hang out with us instead of her friends on occasion as well.
Maybe that was because she had strep.
But she is growing up…
She just went to the movies with a group of girlfriends alone for the first time.
She is getting a cell phone.
She is wearing makeup.
She listens to her music a little louder in her room.
She wants to be a cheerleader and put soccer on the back burner.
All “normal” teenage things.
So why does it scare me so much?
Maybe because it means she is getting older.
Which in turn means we are getting older.
Maybe it’s because she is only five years away from not having to live with us anymore.
Only five years away from not having to be a “full-time” member of this family.
So this makes me want to cling to her like I am on the edge of a cliff.
I don’t want her to grow up so fast and go away.
Okay maybe on those snarky days but for the most part I don’t.
I always want to know she is just down the hall in her bedroom talking to her friends about boys, makeup and what their weekend plans are.
Did you know they make weekend plans now???
I know it’s premature to think about these things but it is getting closer and closer each year and getting very hard to ignore.
I love being her mommy.
Now just “mom”.
And I look forward to all the great changes to come.
But for now, I just want to enjoy the music down the hall and know that we have her to ourselves.
At least for five more years.