I felt… weird yesterday. I am continually in awe of biology: that a diminutive acorn turns into a stately oak tree, that spiders make silk in their bodies and spin webs to catch their food, that we exist.
I am in awe that I helped make and grow a person.
On our son’s birthday — our son who drives and has a deep voice and is applying to colleges — I thought back on 18 years ago, when I was in labor, and later in the day when he was born, a tiny(ish) little thing. He couldn’t talk or control his body or do anything. He was this small, flailing being, brand new to the world and dependent on us for everything.
Now he’s legally an adult, with a personality and sense of humor and wit and a sharp mind, and is sweet and lets me hug him even if he doesn’t want to be hugged. I spent much of his 18th birthday evaluating all the things we still need to teach him, like how to go to the dentist by himself, and hoping we did okay and prepared him sufficiently for life.
It was a joyous feeling, and was also heavy. I’m proud of him and scared for him, and releasing him to the world as an adult is the most intense and necessary form of letting go that I’ll likely experience.
2 thoughts on “Our firstborn turned 18 yesterday”
Congratulations! Well done to the parents… and here’s a secret: they still come back for help/advice/support, even as they also grow & spread wings- my son is 21 now, & moved back home 6 months ago because of Covid etc, & we are loving being together again, not quite as Mum & Son any more…
Congratulations, indeed, Andrea. And yes, “they still come back”….even as they grow/spread wings. Twenty years ago when we bought this old 1920s house in Kansas City, we were pleased by the space to spread out. Well, a few years later, oldest son, (who is now 39), moved in to join us. Even with an astoundingly high I.Q., he’d had several careers, including metal smithing, and building, but life was going nowhere for him so we moved him back here. He now has possession of the basement which suits him, got into college, became a teacher in middle school, and now fixes things for us. It’s been a blessing.
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