When it comes to my children, I don’t often wish to turn back the hands of time. 

Let’s be honest, raising kids is hard work. As much as I’ve enjoyed raising them, I’m looking forward to the next phase of our lives. I’m looking forward to taking a break.

As teenagers, Abbey and Jaiden are steadily working their way through high school, and will soon be off to college. Yes, the thought of them venturing into the world alone is scary, but not nearly as scary as the thought of starting over again.

Of course, there are plenty of things I miss about when my children were little. I don’t want to go back, but there are times I definitely wish we could reintroduce some old habits.

Back then, they were so happy and inquisitive, which is a far cry from the intense drama-filled encounters and know-it-all attitudes I am often faced with today. It is actually in these trying day-to-day moments I find myself reminiscing about all the moments I loved about my children’s younger years.

1. My opinion meant something. Back in the day, my girls were always asking questions. I knew so much and they were happy to hear what I had to say. Now, on the other hand, my opinions seem to be nothing more than the ramblings of an out-of-touch geezer with no grasp on the changing times.

2. They weren’t embarrassed by me. Not only did what I say carry merit, but they enjoyed having me around in public as well. That isn’t the case much anymore. They are more likely to want me to drop them off around the corner than stick around to talk to their friends. I suppose it doesn’t help that, at times, I use the embarrassment factor to my benefit – such as on a day they are being especially trying.

3. They liked to cuddle. I definitely miss this one the most. Whether they were sick, having a bad day or just missed me, there were times when they wanted me close. And as much as I try coercing them into some cuddle time now, they are far too old for that type of sentiment.

4. We told each other good night. Whenever they would spend the night at their dad’s, my girls used to call me before going to bed. Now, I’m lucky they say anything at all, even when we’re in the same house.

5. We hung out as a family. There are a few reasons for the change in the amount of family time we get during the week. Between sports and after-school jobs, that really doesn’t leave much time to hang out. And when they aren’t busy, they would much rather retreat to their bedrooms as hermits than spend any additional time with me than they have to.

6. They needed me. My children still regularly show me they need me around. The only difference is they seem to only need me where money is concerned. I try not to get too offended. They are typical teenagers who don’t want to seem lame by wanting me around on purpose. So for now I will just look forward to the day when needing mom becomes more important than being cool.


Amanda Smith, a working mom of two children, writes weekly for momaha.comRead more from Amanda »

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