Yesterday was my oldest son, Spencer’s birthday. He turned 17 at 5:24 in the morning. Time has gone by so very quickly. I never imagined 17 years ago that we would be where we are right now. I can’t begin to imagine what the next 17 years will bring.
When Spencer was born I lived in Iowa. I remember vividly that I had a room with a window and as I was laboring to bring my first son into this world the sun was rising. I remember staring at that sunrise and thinking about the wonder that was happening to me right that minute. I had no thoughts for anything other than that small boy who I had been carrying inside of me for months and who was no longer a physical part of me, but was his own little person.
I had the pleasure of watching him grow into who is is right now. I taught him to throw a football, I went hunting with him, I kissed the hurt and celebrated the triumphs. I did what a mom should do and now when I look at him it is hard not to see a little boy instead of the man that stands in front of me.
When you become a mom, it is like another full time job. No one tells you this so if you don’t know that let me be the first. Being a mom is work! But, it is also the single most rewarding and amazing job anyone will ever give you. I have been a mom right now for over 25 years. My time as a hands on mom is coming to an end and I am not sure how I feel about that. I don’t think being a mom ever ends, you just get pushed to the sidelines once your children reach a certain age. With Spencer, now is that age. My son loves me very much, I know that by the little things he does, it is just cooler to hang around with other people now. I understand, I left my mom once upon a time too.
Yesterday was bittersweet. Spencer and I rode in his truck and he played a song just for me to let me know without words that I will always be his mom and that he loves me. Then, off he went to do teenage stuff. My husband didn’t understand that, but I did. Then my nearly grown son came home early, so that he could see me and that was it. Birthday over. It was sad and a signpost of things to come. I will learn to deal with it, but I did shed a few tears yesterday and maybe a few more as I write this. I am happy that my boy is learning to live his own life, but I will miss him everyday. Right now there is a gradual pulling away as he journeys into adulthood and it is a heart wrenching part of the job of being a mom.
Someday soon, off he will go and I will be a wreck, for a little bit. Life goes on and I am anxious to see what he will do with his. There is talk of him going to law school again and also of physical therapy, he is young yet so time will tell. What I do know is that today my oldest son became a Junior in high school and as both boys drove off my thoughts turned to times past when they would line up for first day of school pictures and I would drive them to the first day. Letting go is hard, but it is part of the job.
If I could tell Spencer one thing that he could carry with him forever it would be that I love him. Not just normal love, a mom’s love. He was a physical part of me for months, I felt him grow inside of me. When he became his own person he never left my heart. That is the one thing that I hope he will always know, he will always be a part of my heart.