It is just so sad. Yes, I’m bursting with pride for the man he is becoming but the transition hurts so much. I remember his first steps, his first words, and all the big moments in his life. Now at almost 17, can I feel him letting go?
The move to Australia didn’t really phase him, he took it all in his stride. He made friends immediately and he is still friends with them now 4 years on. I appreciate its natural for him to want to spend as much time as he can with his mates, and not do the family day trips and holidays that I’m constantly planning. But it’s so difficult to accept.
I guess it’s normal to miss the days when he was younger and needed me more. The days when I was the sun that his world revolved around. But like many people say, when you have a child, you raise more than one. He’s been a baby, a toddler, in nursery school, in primary school, a pre-teen, an adolescent, a young adult as he is now, and soon a full-blown grown-up! He still answers to the same name, and he will always call me Mam, but I miss the little people he used to be, and I have never noticed the morph from one to the next. It feels like I’m losing touch with the little boy I once knew. It’s beautiful but also tough looking at photos which remind me of the people and the faces I’ll never see again.
I’m big on memories but I don’t recall the last time he held my hand, with his tiny fingers wrapped around mine. Or the last time I pushed him in the swing with his laughter roaring, shouting higher, higher! The last time he gave me a kiss and wrapped his arms around me so tight. That literally breaks my heart. I should have written it down. I didn’t know it would be the last time, I didn’t know he would change. I never got chance to say goodbye to the one before. He grew up when I wasn’t looking.
Now, as he approaches 17, those memories seem like distant dreams. They fade into the background, and I’m left wondering where the time has gone. He’s supposed to grow up, he’s supposed to leave home, he’s supposed to be independent. That means I’ve done my job correctly. He’s also supposed to know and remember that he’s always been loved. Even now at his age and at mine, every night before bed I kiss him and say nos da caru ti (good night, I love you). Keeping his Welsh roots alive.
Being a mother is about learning to adapt and support our children at all times. It’s about letting go of the past and embracing the changes that come with the growing up phase in our journey as a parent. It’s about finding joy in the little moments, no matter how different they may be from the memories of the past and our children’s younger years.
Although I miss the little moments, I am proud of the man he is becoming. He is finding his own path in life. I will always treasure the memories we have shared, and I am grateful for the journey we have taken together. And, who knows, maybe one day, maybe when he is a parent, he will look back on these days with the same fondness and hold onto his childhood memories as tightly as I do.
I am no longer the main character in his life and he’s no longer a boy, but he’ll always be my boy.
Written by Editor, Rhian Cable
Mum, Wife, Marketing Specialist, Book Worm, Sunrise Junkie and Blogger – Living life every minute.