Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Or Is That Just Me?

So I have finally celebrated my 32nd birthday. I share the date (9/22) with Bilbo and Frodo Baggins, a fact I have always thought was extra cool because I'm such a LOTR freak. Unfortunately, I'm the only one who thinks it's cool.

Turning thirty didn't bother me - it seemed more like a novelty than anything to worry about. Same with thirty-one. But thirty-two. Man, thirty-two sounds like I'm deeply committed to being in my thirties. There's no denying it now. I don't feel like I'm an adult. Why is that? Why is it that no matter what age you are, the age about fifteen years down the road seems positively ancient? And then you reach that age and realize it's not at all what you thought it would be and that you are not at all where you thought you would be.

This last year has been a year of major learning for me. My DH returned to school to finish his degree, causing a major but manageable shift in the way our family functions. I took on a new job last summer that moved me into a new career path. The boys have grown and changed so much that it astounds me. I've learned a lot about myself. I think I'm nearly on the verge of feeling like a full-fledged adult. The fact that I'm already the dual-caregiver to two small children astounds me on a daily basis. How is that possible? Parenting is one of those things you have to jump into without thinking too much - because thinking too much will cause you to become paralyzed with fear.

I remember being nine years old in the produce section of the supermarket with my mother, then not even thirty years old herself. I vividly remember the moment I realized I was the first child my mother had raised and that she very probably didn't have any idea what she was doing. That's what parenting is all about - making it up as you go along. There are more informed ways of going about it, but we all make the daily decisions that shape our children pretty much on the spur of the moment. I just hope I'm doing okay...I do love those little guys more than anything else (except my husband - most days anyway LOL).

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