We all have fears.
My husband and I met when we were teenagers. In college, I thought I knew exactly where I was headed. We were young when our first daughter was born and I was never afraid of motherhood. I took it on and embraced it; the good (breastfeeding and bottles when I was certain I might be starving our oldest) , the bad (poopy diapers, spit-up, and sleepless nights) and the colic – which can only be defined as the ugly! All of it! Sure there were weepy nights here and there; quietly rocking the baby on the bed, staring blankly at the wall – no sleep will do that to you! Still I never questioned my abilities or purpose.
Fast forward eighteen years! (In spite of what everyone might tell you, those two words are really the only accurate way to describe how quickly your children grow up! Truthfully!)
A stark reality began hanging around my head like a little black cloud. As much as I didn’t want to admit it, life was changing and soon I would be “obsolete”. I have always welcomed change, but without warning, I found myself petrified of it! I was in unfamiliar territory and surrounded by mountains of questions. Questions that I had only very casually considered over the years. One morning I looked in the mirror and all I could think was “who in the hell am I and what am I going to do now?” and the tears began to flow…I had lost sight of my purpose.
Oh, deep down I know that as parents, we are never truly obsolete. If we are really doing the best job we can, our sweet little ducklings are supposed to spread their wings and create their own nests. I knew all of this. Really, I did! Of course, knowing is one thing. Learning to embrace the changes can be an emotional mine field! Eventually, I realized that I couldn’t possibly be alone in my fears, so I decided to own it and figure out how to move forward. Read a bit more about me and why I started this blog here.
Welcome! I’m an “obsolete” mom. Maybe you are too?
9 thoughts on “I am an “obsolete” mom. You might be one too…”
Welcome to the club, my friend. 😉 You are so right; it’s about learning how to navigate these years that is the hardest part. Everyone warns you about the teenage years, but I think these years can be even harder to navigate in a lot of ways. Once your children are young adults, you can strongly suggest what they should or shouldn’t do, but you can’t use the ” because I’m the parent” stance. At the same time, they feel the freedom and desire to push you away as they try to figure out their own limits and boundaries. But, don’t worry, they come back eventually and appreciate you in a whole different way.
I think you’re right with regard to navigating this season. I am looking forward to coming full circle with them. Love that I have friends like you who have already walked this path!
Great title and musings about life. It caught my attention instantly. A key “ah-ha” moment for me came after my daughter started working in SF in her first big-city job. I wasn’t quite sure where I fit in her life (or in my own!). I tried to help her navigate the city I used to live in, but which was her home now. She didn’t want, or need my “help” and bristled. We talked about it and I realized my demonstrating my “city prowess” was a way of showing I was still “relevant. It was a valuable turning point for us both. Thanks for reminding me of that! CS5711
Staying “relevant” is such a great association. I love that! As parents, it’s so difficult to hold on and let go at the same time. Thanks for reading!
What a great topic, I’m sure blogging will help you process and figure out what to do next. Any hobbies you never felt you had the time for? I do not have children, but have many in my life on whom I hope to have an impact. I was just telling someone today how interesting it is to have 85-87 year old parents. I still do need an depend on them, even in my 40s. It does, however, now feel like I am the one who worries about them just like they used to worry about me when I was growing up.
Thanks for visiting! I think blogging will definitely help me navigate these waters. It’s interesting that we come full circle with our parents and yet there is still that little bit of dependence. 🙂
From what I have seen with my slightly older women friends and clients is that being a Mom is never obsolete. I have one friend who is 77 and her daughters are calling for her advice and support all the time, not to mention the Grandkids. Not sure if parenting every really ends. CS5711.
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You’re right, it never really ends. I think certain phases are simply more difficult to let go of. 🙂