My DOV turned 10 this weekend. Firstborn, long-limbed and crazy and beautiful. How did this happen? How did you make me into a mother, and I not even notice? Ten years of mothering tangled under my feet, and wrapped around my heart.
Running towards me starts to slide into running away, and I see you all the more clearly for it. Shades of independence, gallantry, and tenderness dance with defiance and moodiness. Hints of the man-to-be skip over your face, and then melt away.
You dream, I hope. You feel, I trample. You hold, I fold. You shine, I reflect. You grow, I break.
It’s the best part of parenting, this breaking. You can’t hold it all in, and the cracks that start to show tell you where your defenses need to come down. Where you have to bend, or the floods will drown you. Where the tears need to fall to soften the clay.
I’ve been broken, and have no regrets. I’ve been trampled, and will continue to be. The days get longer, and the years shorter. You go away more often these days, and I feel how empty it is without you. The burrow you’ve dug for yourself, deep in my heart? It’s not going anywhere, it’s yours for life.
I found a wee ledge to rest on this weekend, and while it’s no finish line (there is no such thing in mothering) it’s a sweet moment none-the-less. The ten years you’ve been my son, my DOV? They’ve been the best by far. The highest highs, the lowest lows, and soaked with all the bits of life that fill in the cracks, dribble down our chins, and leak out of the corners of our eyes. I wouldn’t have it any other way.