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Thoughts For Thursday: Passing A Driver’s Test – and More

July 15, 2010 · 9 comments

in Parenting, Thoughts For Thursday

This past Saturday morning, my son took his driving test.  I have to tell you, that test is a very stressful time as a parent.  Not stressful because your child will be driving, but because you want them to pass so much, and because you have to sit in the backseat during the test, and you are not allowed to say a word.  Actually, I don’t know if I have been silent for 30 minutes outside of sleeping, since I learned how to talk!

In the end, after parallel parking and driving on every type of road, my son was handled his ‘you pass’ certificate.  We then drove off to the Secretary of State Super Center that is open until noon on Saturdays.  At approximately 11:08 Saturday morning, my son had his license in his fist, and a huge grin on his face.

As a mom, I was so happy for him.  Everyone asks if I am really nervous about him driving and I suppose I am.  But I think I am more excited for his new freedom and opportunities.   The process of watching him prepare to get his license, and then actually get his license, made make me think about is all his milestones, and how quickly it all goes by.

I thought back to when he was a baby.  This kid had no desire to be mobile.  He just wanted to be read to, even as an infant.  I used to worry because all his ‘contemporaries’ were all over the place.  Meanwhile, he was sitting on the couch with me, holding ‘Go Dogs Go’.  He was late to crawl, walk and talk.  As a matter of fact, he destroyed the competition at a crawling race at a company work party.  Of course, he was 15 months old and had crawling mastered by then, while his opponents were 5 months younger.  No matter, he still got a medal and a picture with Simba.   That race feels like it could have been last weekend!

More milestones came and went over the years.  Me crying as he went to kindergarten, me crying when he won awards, me crying over a million different things.  In a way it feels like a little stab in the heart with each milestone that is reached because you know they are that much closer to leaving the nest.  It isn’t easy when you like the nest the way it is!

I know it is cliche, but kids do grow up in the blink of an eye.  When you have a baby, people always tell you how quick it will go, and they are right.  Bringing the babies home from the hospital seems like yesterday, literally.  I miss my youth, I miss being needed so much, I miss a lot of things.  However, I have gained a tremendous amount;  I have gained a more adult relationship with each of my kids, and have had absolute joy in watching them become the people they are today.  I appreciate each of their sense of humor, their views, and appreciation for life.  I learned how they have compassion and want to help others.  Had I known how much I would gain from each phase of their life, I would not have dreaded them growing up as much as I did when they were little.

Parenthood is unlike any job you could ever have.  You have the opportunity to help shape a life and then set it free.   I am still in the process of raising my kids, but I am so excited for their futures, and look forward to watching it all unfold.  I am keeping my fingers crossed!

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Vicky July 15, 2010 at 10:57 am

I’m misty-eyed. They grow up so fast.

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Kris July 15, 2010 at 1:14 pm

Sorry Vicky! They do grow up fast though. 🙁

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Steph July 15, 2010 at 12:59 pm

You have me all blubbery now. I had visions of my son going off to kindergarten.
It’s already going too fast and he’s only four months old.

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Kris July 15, 2010 at 1:14 pm

Steph – Didn’t mean to make you blubbery! It is just so wonderful to watch those milestones, even though it can kinda break your heart!

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Lola July 15, 2010 at 3:26 pm

My kids are all in their 20’s, grown and out of college now – out of the house too! – and I can vouch for the “blink of an eye” cliche. I will say that many, many of the days with the kids went by very slowly, but all of the years went by incredibly fast – just another true paradox of parenthood, I suppose.

Thanks for sharing your eloquent reflections about what you’ve gained in your journey with your children thus far and your excitement for what lies ahead. Being a parent challenges you on just about every level there is – physically, emotionally, spiritually, and – ha ha! financially – but when you give it your all, you get more out of it than you could ever dream was possible!

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Money Reasons July 15, 2010 at 10:09 pm

My kids are still pre-teen, but I know tomorrow or the next day, my kids will be passing those milestones on the path to leave our nest. I’m a little nervuous about those days. Surprisingly, I like being a dad more that I initially expected.

Thanks for sharing a glimpse of the future for us all with kids. Since reading about your experiences, I’ve been trying a little harder to do good things with my kids!

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S July 16, 2010 at 8:08 am

Congrats on the license!

Initially, I was happy that I had my kids early and thought I’d be on to a different phase at this point in life, but then I felt like you and felt like it was over too soon so I know what you mean about feeling like they grow up too fast. But it’s not the end… only the beginning of a whole new segment of your life and you are just in the transition phase. In the midst of college visits, middle and high school sports and events, and all the angst and pride that accompany a new driver’s license, first girlfriends, concerts, teen parties, and curfews, I’m suddenly back to stepping on little army men, trying to brush out someone’s tangled hair without pulling, tons of laundry, lots of tears and hugs and tickling, little bodies climbing into my bed at 2 am, cheering on a child’s first organized sport in 95 degree weather, first baby steps/words, a playpen in my bedroom and boosters and baby seats with crumbs under them taking up space in back of my jeep. And although I am doing it this time around with more experience, I have a lot less energy for it!

If you had asked me only a few months ago where or what I’d being doing this summer… none of these things would have ever occurred to me nor would I have believed anyone if they had suggested I would be doing this. So…my point is…be careful what you wish for!

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Squirrelers July 16, 2010 at 8:55 pm

Very thoughtful post. While my kids are 7 and 1, I can already see how they change in the blink of an eye. I treasure how my daughter gets so excited to see me, and is so sweet and thoughtful. I hope that some portion of this, in some way, makes it through the teenage years:)

I have noticed her starting to switch from only calling me “Daddy”, to sprinkling in “Dad” on occasion. It seems like a blink of an eye how that has happened! Sometimes I just wish I could freeze time and hold onto it for just a little longer. But, alas, we all know we must appreciate what we have every day.

Anyway, I can appreciate what you’re saying, and what you are expressing in your post. I get it:)

Congrats on the driver’s license, by the way!

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