Sweet Sixteen Parenting Advice from Parent to Parent
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I remember it as if it were yesterday, though nearly 16 years have passed. I was 23 years old and about to become a mom for the first time. There was a sense of terror and joy all at the same time. What would I do now? I was responsible for the life of another human being.
The doctor yelled, it’s a girl, the nurse held her up for me to see. A perfect little girl and she was ready to take on the world. I can still remember that day like it was yesterday. The room, the doctors, her scrunched up red face and wisps of platinum blonde hair.
Almost 16 years later I still want to hold that little girl on my lap and tuck her in at night. I’ll sometimes peak in on her while she sleeps. I see her laying there curled up under a comforter holding on tight to her stuffed yellow duck, and I know that no matter how hard she tries to convince me she’s all grown up,’ she’s still a little girl inside.
There are times when she is counting the days until she can drive, talks of the car she wants and making plans for her 16th birthday party. Then a few hours later, as her ear starts to hurt from yet another infection, I find her in my bedroom want to curl up next to me for comfort, as if she was 5 years old again. I hold her close to me and try to take the pain away. In the morning, she is a teenager again and her friends, music and the computer are the focus of her life.
I can’t really call her my little girl’ anymore. She’s nearly 5 taller than I am. When she stands next to me I feel like an ant. But no matter how much she grows, no matter the milestones she achieves, she will always be my little girl. She will roll her eyes at me as if I’m crazy, but I just smile and watch her grow-up in front of me.
The little girl I held with the platinum blonde hair is now a young lady, facing adulthood and looking to take on the world. She stands at the door with her guitar in hand and an eye for architecture. I watch her and can only hope that I’ve taught her that she can be anything or anyone she wants to be. The world is hers and she has the key. I was given to her from me, through God’s love, nearly 16 years ago, when she was brought into this world.
I gave her wings to fly and as difficult as it will be let her go, I know God gave her to me to raise to be the best person she can be, to continue the circle of life that she was born into.
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