Wednesday, October 19, 2011

a teen mom.

a teen mom . . .
that's me.

not a mom who's a teen,
but as of today, a mom of a teen.

yep. big girl turns "lucky" 13 today.

& i don't like it.

not because we're already experiencing
a taste of teenage angst/attitude/hormones,
& realizing we're facing several years
of the same — & no doubt worse — ahead of us.

not because her growing up
means i'm growing old ... er.
[see "cruel irony of moms & daughters
going through 'the change' simultaneously."

but because she's 13.

how is this possible

when she was just awakening us via baby monitor
with the sweetest little babbling sing-songs,
live from the crib at the crack of dawn,
bright & shiny as a penny in the brand new day?

when she was just riding in the front of the basket
& wowing the cashier at target
by answering the question about her favorite dinosaur
with "a pawathauwapholuth [parasaurapholus]"?

when she was just pressing her preschooler ear
to my big belly, "listening" to her little brother?
"does it sound like the ocean?" i wondered.
"it sounds like a little bird," she chirped.

how is this possible
when i was just feeling her
roll around in my round belly

i'm unnerved by how this occasion unravels me.

from seemingly nowhere, i'm reminded of
kahlil gibran's words of wisdom on children:

your children are not your children.
they are the sons & daughters of life's longing for itself.
they come through you, but not from you,
& though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.

& i realize that until just about now,
i thought that poem was philosophically lovely,
but not really true.

i mean, of course she came from me —
look at her eyes, look at my stretch marks!
of course she belongs to me —
see how she needs me, see how i take care of her!

of course she is my child.
who else's??

today, i get it.

she has begun to shed the skin of being my child,
& today, i'm beginning to feel it.

what i'm feeling today are the first twinges of her
coming through me
into her own self.

& just like our first labor together,
i work to breathe through the pain.
breathe through to the other side.

welcome to the world,
my amazing, beautiful, brilliant, miraculous

teen girl.

image source: her & me, 11.98.


Michelle Moon Reinhardt said...

Gosh I love this! So true.

Anonymous said...

Wow, you're old! KIDDING. Print out this post and save for your daughter's wedding day. (hopefully a few years away).

kriscard said...

thank you, friends. :)

Mrs. Blake said...

This brought tears to my eyes...your ability to pull readers into your world is truly a gift. Both BG (or TG) and LB are so lucky to have you! :) xo