My boy turned thirteen earlier this year. I never would have thought that turning another year would bring about so much change. Most days I feel totally inadequate. I navigate these waters with uncertainty as I’ve never tread them before. Parenting a teenager is no joke. I’ve learned that I can’t take anything personal, that loving unconditionally is my number one job, and that growing from a child to an adult is not an easy task. It’s just so different to be on this side of it.
Jeremy and I had parent teacher interviews yesterday with all of our kid’s teachers. I never know what to expect at these things, especially as my children have had to adapt to a new school in a foreign land. As I listened to Joshua’s teachers talk about how much he’s matured this year, how polite and well mannered he is, and how intelligent he is, I realized once again that home is the place to stretch his wings and see how far he can fly. It’s so very messy at times, but I have to be ok with that. Growing up is messy. No one has the perfect formula, because there isn’t one. Every child is different. Every parent is different. When I hear he's getting it right at school, that he's making good choices, then I realize that there is fruit from all this stretching. It just doesn't always feel like it in the midst of teenage muck.
I tell myself this truth often, that our hard work as parents is paying off, but still, in the midst of the stretching and growing when emotions are flying, I forget, and I must remind myself all over again. Thank goodness Jesus is on my side. I need His help every.single.day.
I think parents need a little encouragement every now and then. I pray today that you get a little encouragement for all the hard work you are doing to raise children!