My eldest child is ten. Ten. Last time I looked she was a toddler.
Puberty is galloping over the horizon, and I wish it wasn’t. I want her to stay as a funny, quirky imaginative little girl. Already the hormonal ups and downs have started and she’s losing her little girlness. I know I should embrace her growing up, but so far I’m struggling.
She’s conflicted too. She feels things differently. She’s always been an easy, happy child, but now she wakes us in the night with random worries. If we get cross with her, she thinks we don’t care. This week saw us both crying at 10pm about something stupid. And this is only the start of it.
I love having primary school age children. They’re funny and thoughtful and interested in everything. They’re potty trained, mostly, they can walk for miles and read books and they sleep through the night. They’re amazing travel companions. They do what I say, on the whole, and they need me. I like being needed.
The next bit is a complete unknown, as a parent. I can remember the hideousness of being a teenager; shy, awkward, worrying that everyone else was having a much better time than me. Periods, greasy hair and spots: I wouldn’t wish them on anyone, let alone my gorgeous little girl.
And as for drugs, sex and teenage pregnancy, I’m adopting an emu pose.
I wish the future would hold it’s horses.