Now We Are Sixteen and Thirteen

It’s sometimes unsettling
to look up or straight ahead,
when I was so used to crouching down.
It’s disorienting
to see a mustache of hair
instead one made of milk.
It’s bewildering
to see my favorite sweaters
skip out the door
on a straight haired version of myself.

I miss the days
when they thought the best thing in the world
was hearing me read to them in funny voices
while they dipped apples into peanut butter.
I miss the days
when all it took was me singing
about a frog’s aspirations or the loneliness of a unicorn
to soothe their hearts.

But
I love the curious young woman
who walks with me every afternoon,
and whose open heart and open mind
makes me smile and inspires me.
I love the earnest young man
who talks with me about video games and politics,
and whose depth of insight and empathy
makes me think and gives me hope.

I’ll look through their baby albums today,
then put them back on the shelf,
looking forward to good conversation at dinner.
I hope they clean up their dishes this time. 

Song Choice: Since the inspiration at Imaginary Gardens at Real Toads was based on Bittersweet Melodies by Feist, I'm going with that.

26 comments:

  1. Nostalgic . . . bittersweet . . . and then the realism of that final line, LOL!

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    1. LOL, they still needed reminding that evening anyway :D

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  2. It’s bewildering
    to see my favorite sweaters
    skip out the door
    on a straight haired version of myself.


    I've been there! Your words cannot but strike a chord with those whose children are teens or (in my case) shortly out of them. It is a rare privilege to watch one's offspring turn into adults to be reckoned with.

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    1. I'm proud of the way they are exploring the world. I do wish the dishes were put away more regularly though.

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  3. Oy, the passage of time - I often ask Mrs. Moskowitz "where did our kids go?" Yes, it's gratifying to see them grow up. It's what I'd call a very delayed gratification. Love ya, Mom

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    1. LOL, I have friends with a newborn now who wonder if their wee one will ever sleep. I promised them weekend sleep will come back again in time, but then they'll wonder when he's finally going to get up!

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  4. This is so tender and definitely brings me to think about time...how swift it is. My favorite is walking with the young woman...so special.

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    1. I'm pretty thankful that they both still enjoy spending time with me every now and again.

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  5. Awwww :3 wonderfully written!

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  6. This was so sweet, so poignant! And, so true! Lovely write!

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  7. Great positioning of those two photos of those two children here -- observing what is there throughout and for all time. It's delicate and funny and deep.

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    1. I'm very curious to see what the next stage of living reveals for them. All I know is I'm enjoying the process of watching them find things out.

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  8. GAH.
    Okay, my kids are three years behind yours, 13 and almost-10. This captures quite literally all the joy and loss and bittersweet. Happy birthday to you today, Mama!

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    1. Thanks! These are crazy years aren't they? Goodness, there are so many changes and firsts now.

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  9. Oh, this is so real. I love it and live it.

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  10. Rommy, this left me with a smile so huge that I look a tad ridiculous. And I like it. I love the poetic picture you've chosen to share with us. I see the girl running out of the room with her mom's sweating, her delighted cackles filling the house with mirth. I can hear the young man debating for what is right, the frown on his face making him look older than his years. And I feel the pride of the parent, missing the earlier years of her babes, and already proud of what the future will bring. ♥

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    1. I consider myself very lucky to be able to have watched it all unfold in front of me. :)

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  11. i love your nostalgic nod to your children. it reminds me of Dorianne Laux "Girl in the Doorway."

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    1. I'll have to go look that one up!

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  12. Oh, those precious memories...What beauty when a child grows into the person you mothered, hoped she/he would be.

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    1. They still are very much in the discovery phase of life though. Just looking at some of the electives they are choosing to take still surprise me (music writing for computer games?). But it is a fun process. :)

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  13. I love this! Memories! Priceless! Lots of pride in your words!

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    1. *grin* I am, most days, especially if they haven't been slobs on those days. :D

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