Thursday, April 24, 2008

Half Way

Little Miss History turns nine today. Maybe that number doesn't seem so momentous. It's not a decade, like ten. Or new teen, like thirteen. But to me it marks a big point in my journey as her parent. We have hit the half way mark. In nine more years she'll be preparing to graduate from high school and head off on her own, hopefully to college, definitely into adulthood.

So I've been cataloging and calculating:almost 10,000 meals fed to this child and close to that many nightly tuck-ins. I've bathed and dressed and diapered her countless times. She's learned to sleep through the night, eat big people food, walk, talk, skip, do the monkey bars, jump rope. She knows her ABC's and 123's and the length of her small intestines. She can read (and does so voraciously) and write. She makes her bed and her lunch and her sisters mad. She's learned the importance of kindness, respect, honesty, forgiveness.

And there's where I see the bend in the road. She has learned the practical things of life, how to count by two's and tie her shoes. Now more and more will the lessons of these second set of nine be those of the heart, shaping her morals and values. We've given her many of those foundations, but she'll begin now deciding whether to use them. And even though I'll still be here to teach and correct, it will depend even more on what I model, however imperfectly I do that.

It inspires prayer, age nine. It was hard work, physically, to get her this far. To finish well will require hard work emotionally. Am I ready?

1 musings:

Llama Momma said...

You describe this parenting transition so beautifully here. And I am reminded today to not only pray for my friends and pray for my children...but to pray for my freinds' children.

How desperately we need community as we raise our children -- not only in the toddler years, but all the years.