I'm posting this blog I wrote last year, because I don't want to lose it. I published it as an assignment on my teacher blog page, but it definitely fits better with these musings. In a month, Gabe will be 14. This year has been the typical roller coaster one can expect with teenagers, but I am still so incredibly amazed at how lucky I am to be on this ride with my boys and their dad. It doesn't get much better...
This summer is flying by. As of today, I've been out of school for an entire month. During that time, I did 3 grad classes, another CCU, cleaned out my attic, have been watching my 3 month old niece twice a week, volunteered for VBS, and more. I'm tired. Oh, and I had a garage sale Friday and Saturday. I'll say it again, I'm tired.
But on Wednesday this week, we took time to celebrate one of the best parts of our lives. Gabriel Brock, our oldest, turned 13. While I have a little nostalgia about how great he was when he was little, I have truly enjoyed every phase and been ready for the next. Ok, I guess the one exception to that was the first 12 weeks when he screamed every waking second. Every other stage has been challenging, exciting, fun, thrilling, scary, and humbling. This kid is our first try at this whole parenting thing and my husband and I will readily admit we've screwed up. Lots. More times that I can count. In fact, I can think of 3 or 4 examples of decisions or statements this summer in which I would like to call out "Do-over!" and try them again. But that's just it. There are no do-overs as a parent. Or a spouse. Or a teacher. Every single minute has to be "game on" and the clock is definitely running.
Some of my friends dread the teenage years, but I have to say I'm ready. Elementary school was great, but Gabe's more than ready for middle school (7th grade in the fall). He's clever, funny, and growing every second it seems. I love teenagers; that's why I can teach high school. While I don't love the snottiness, attitude, or the mood swings we've been experiencing at our house, I am very aware that we are already late in the 3rd quarter of our full-time parenting with him. I'm looking forward to every second I get to be with Gabe this 13th year. Every second counts, after all, and the clock is ticking.