Thursday, September 24, 2015

Almost Eleven

In less than one month, our oldest son will turn eleven.  I just can't believe it.  On one hand the time has gone so fast but on the other hand, I can't imagine life before him. He is changing. Right before my eyes. I am watching him mature in so many ways. I am witnessing the way he is processing the world and taking more and more steps towards independence.  He already has such a firm faith and clear understanding of God. His love for Jesus is rock solid.  He doesn't question what he reads in the Bible, he simply believes it.  I have so many mixed emotions about this new age.  There are days, hours, minutes, when he is very much a young child.  But here lately, something new is happening.  More and more often, with each passing day I am getting tiny glimpses of the person he is becoming.  In the last couple of weeks, he has started opening the car door for me.  I love this.  I know it won't last forever, so I cherish it each and every time.  It is funny because, he treats me like a queen but he has always had a hard time showing that same respect to other adults.  We have talked about this and I try to encourage him to treat everyone the way he treats me.  But he always comes back to the same answer, "They are not you, they are not my mom."  It is a work in progress, but we are getting there.  :) For a boy who is usually blowing full steam ahead I just recently witnessed the most gentle moment.  We were caught under a covering at my daughter's ballet studio while it rained buckets.  We were trying to wait it out before running to the car.  While we were waiting, a young girl (she was about his age) was dropped off by her mother.  She ran under the covered area with her umbrella and then had a hard time trying to close it.  She asked if anyone could help her.  As I reached over to help her, my son spoke up and said he would do it.  In the most calm and composed manner he fixed the umbrella for her and then politely handed back.  She smiled and then blushed a bit.  I, on the other hand, felt like I was watching a clip from a Nicholas Spark's novel plus having an out of body experience all at the same time.  It was the most precious moment.  I couldn't believe how mature and grown up he looked.  I loved every second of that little exchange.  It showed me that even though he is rough and wild and 100% boy, he can also be kind and gentle.  Tonight, while his brother and sister were upstairs taking showers, I noticed it was just the two of us in the kitchen.  The TV was off and it was quiet.  We had the nicest conversation.  He has recently started riding in the front seat of the car.  I love having his company and conversation.  I am so thankful that I have been given the wisdom from my mother and cousin (whose son is 16) that these moments will pass and I should hold on to every second.  They has taught me to slow down when he is willing to talk and share.  I have also been advised to "play it cool" and stay calm in the event he wants to talk about a topic that may make me want to jump out of my skin, run around screaming, and then jump under the covers never to emerge again.  Thankfully, I am pretty sure we are no where near any of that and my biggest concern right now is when should I buy him deodorant.  :) 
This picture was taken by my cousin Kristi in 2010.  It has always been one of my favorites.
As I brace myself for hormones and the roller coaster that will come in the next couple of years, I am also treasuring these small moments.  I feel like God is giving me tiny previews of the man my son will be.  It is a different feeling and it is very hard to explain.  I feel like I am getting to know him on a different level.  I will continue as his care taker, food maker, laundry doer, but I also get to have this really neat relationship.  It is kind of like we are a team, a mother-son duo and I love it. 

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