My kids are aged 13 and 10 now.
On a day to day basis, I am aware of this fact.
I know how old they are, I was definitely there when they came into this world.
It’s just when I stop and think about it that I can’t quite grasp that they are 13 and 10.
My daughter is excelling at being a teenager.
All of that confidence, intelligence and exuberance that I adored in her when she was younger is still there in full force as a teenager.
I think that translates as sass now, right?!
I adore her, and our relationship is shifting to allow for her to grow older, to grow into the woman that she’s meant to be.
My son is the quieter one, the one who lives for the simple things in life. Football, cricket, video games and plenty of junk food and he’s happy.
He has an air of maturity about him at school that doesn’t always come home with him, but you can’t have everything!
He and his best friend have one of the best friendships I’ve ever seen, firm friends since nursery, and it means so much to him.
13 and 10.
Yet I can remember so clearly those days with the two of them both at home, before school life began.
Playgroups, toddler classes, soft play.
Trips to feed the ducks, picnics and walks.
Those days were only a few months ago, surely?
I feel both like they were yesterday and that they were a lifetime ago, which I know sounds strange. Do you get it?
They both have several interests outside of school, along with wanting to catch up with friends, get homework done and spend time with loved ones.
The days fly by, the weeks fly by.
I move from day to day ensuring I remember where they need to be, things they need to have, times I need to pick them up, drop them off. And then, blink, it’s the weekend again.
We make the time to do things as a family, whether that be playing games, an outing or a movie night. Anything to just bring us all together and slow that busyness down just for a few hours.
Is parenting easiest now? Am I at peak parenting right now with these ages?
They have enough independence that I do get to physically rest a lot more than I used to when they’re around, but still enough dependence that I am not emotionally exhausted worrying about what they’re doing out in the world.
I look back and I look forward and can only really feel the moment that we are in.
I am lucky enough to be an auntie, and that’s where I see both ends of the age scale with our children.
My fabulous nephews are now 26 and 20. Again, I remember very clearly their baby and toddler days, and yet look at them now. Both men to be proud of, both wonderful cousins to my kids.
My adorable niece is just 18 months old. I’ve seen her every month of her life, growing so quickly in front of my eyes. She couldn’t possibly be any cuter, and she clearly loves her cousins very much. The feeling is mutual.
I see my nephews and think about how quickly they have grown up. I see my niece and can’t quite believe that it’s been so many years since my two were that little.
I guess what I am trying to say, is that I am pausing.
I am trying to just stop from time to time to appreciate the kids right now, as they are, at 13 and 10.
They are kind and have lovely friends, they do well at school, they get on well together.
They are fun to be around, to spend time with. Whether it’s singing loudly with my daughter or watching sport with my son, I love seeing them enjoying what they love.
I feel very proud to be mum to these two. They have their moments, but they’re good kids.
And I just want to try and savour these moments, make myself stop and do so. Because I know how quickly time goes.
13 and 10. Love these two.