Thursday, August 30, 2007

Being 12

I've been thinking a lot lately since Kieran turned 12 how different our lives are.

When I was 12 my parents were divorced, we moved to Arizona, my mom worked 2 jobs to support us.
I took care of my brother and sister, I ran the house, I cooked, cleaned, got the kids bathed, to bed, to school etc. I was a surrogate mother at the age of 12.
I was responsible enough to do this, my mom hired a babysitter but I ran her off. I was doing everything anyway, I told my mom why waste the money when we need it to take care of us.

Of course the downside to this is that I rebelled hard later on because I felt cheated out of childhood. As I look back though maybe it was part of preparation for my role as a mother now.

There were several years where I did not want kids, I wanted a career and growing up the way I did I know first hand you can't have both at the same time because one will suffer, it's usually the kids.
I am very strong in my values that mothers should raise their own kids but that's not what this is about.

I look at my 12 year old son who is growing up so fast, he is intelligent and responsible but at the same time he is still a kid. I want him to be a kid as long as he can because the responsibilities of adulthood aren't too far off.


justjuls said...

I am thankful for the same - that my kids get to be kids.
I was telling my girls the other day that at their ages - I was basically emancipated. I didn't have freedom - but I did have the responsibilities of the world on my shoulders - taking care of a mentally ill mother. My parents were divorced when I was 9 making me a latch-key kids - something they've never known - and then living alone with a mom who spiraled into a hellish descent.
Life is so good now - and it is a precious gift they have of actually being children!

Halfmoon Girl said...

When I am feeling guilty about my parenting, I remember how it was for me at times at my kid's age and am thankful for the life they have.