“if it matters to you… my babe it matters to me… I’ll go where you’re going… I’ll keep on holding… I’m going to give you my all…  I’m going to give you my all”

the older I get the more sentimental I become…  and Facebook apparently knows how to play me…  like a fiddle…  or a piano… really any instrument that you tinkle or fiddle with…

these memories pop up on your feed in the morning…  it says something like ‘7 years ago’ and all of a sudden you are crying and living in the past and trying to hug your teenage kids while they are eating cereal…

I actually want to thank Facebook… if it weren’t for these memories popping up I can’t imagine what a terrible mom I would be… angry, bitter, tired… but Facebook reminds us why we are in this parenting battle…

it reminds us that we somehow survived raising tiny little children and this fills us with confidence that the teenage years will not defeat us…

my parents used to have to set up an elaborate slide show to see their memories…  they would get a white sheet out and pin it up on a wall, set up the projector and after 4 hours of getting ready we would slowly look through their memories…  even though they were so grainy you could not really see what was going on…

now I get a slide show every morning…  reliving the broken bones, sporting highlights, camping, hunting, vacationing…

and darn you Facebook, I was going to scream at my boys this morning for leaving their towels and underwear on the floor of the bathroom but I just saw a picture of them when they were just learning how to go ‘poo-poo on the potty’ and suddenly I feel like they have come such a long way how on earth can I get mad about a towel on the floor???  at least they went #2 in the toilet… no, they didn’t flush it… but the Facebook memory has me thinking that perhaps they still like to show me that they went on the potty…

I have a few friends this year that have their kids graduating…  in fact, a friend and I just had tears at the rink last night trying to discuss it…

life suddenly hit me that I hardly have any years left with my oldest boy…  and then he’ll be gone and never talk to me again in his whole life…

what I had to tell him the other day was that he has been my best buddy for 15 years now...  I’ve experienced every first with him…  every new thing we did as a family was with him…  every mistake, success, trip, sport… it all has been going through it with him…

the problem is I suddenly want to hang out with him more than ever as I feel time ticking by… but he is a teenager… and if you know anything about teenagers, they are rather difficult to hang out with…

everything is an argument… he disagrees with every single statement or comment I make, almost before I open my mouth…

so I feel like the farmer and I are caught in this weird role of wanting to cherish our time with him as he soon will leave our home, yet hating every moment of our time with him… like fingernails on a chalkboard…

I believe this is what Yogi’s call the ‘Yin and the Yang’

this is where the role of grandparents is so crucial during the teenage years…  it is a way to feel like a family member at least cares about the teenager’s life, but you as a parent don’t actually have to be right there you can be on vacation in Mexico and still feel like you are taking care of your kids because the grandparents are…

the one thing the farmer and I have realized over the years of raising our three kids is that we will never regret being involved in their lives, caring about what they care about and watching them succeed and fail at these endeavours…

I recently heard that to be a  healthy person you should be getting 8 hours of sleep a night…  this is obviously written by a retired person…

as Facebook keeps taking me back to all the memories of the past years, I think to myself ‘I am so glad I got to see that’…  it does seem exhausting when you get the kids schedules all put onto your calendar…

my advice is to make sure you post it all on Facebook (even when you lose or your kid does not do well at something), because 7 years down he road you will want that memory to pop up on your phone…  (some people need less encouragement to post on Facebook than others)

you will want to see the look on your child’s face when they won a tournament or lost a football game in the snow…

or better yet, what I have found is there is generally one mom on the team your child is on that has begun to dabble in photography… so you just encourage her to pursue her dreams of photographic journalism, meanwhile get her to post pictures on Facebook and tag yourself in them…

I watched this year as two moms hugged each other after the last football game… it was both of their second boys, so they had been watching football for quite a few years now and I saw the way they cried and held each other and could feel the sense of disbelief that it was all over…

what an important lesson for me to learn –  to appreciate watching my kids play sports and soak it up because it does end at some point…

of course there is always a new chapter, a new adventure, a new team… but that season of their life is over with…  and now it is a memory… hopefully a Facebook memory so you don’t forget it… 

the farmer told me last night that he realized a few years ago that each of our kids is different…  and they all are skilled in some areas and need work in some areas… and it really had nothing to do with him or I as parents… they are who they are… for a reason and a purpose…

and it is our job to discipline, instruct, guide, love and take care of them during this part of their journey…

(ok – full disclosure the farmer only said the first part of that… I kinda added to it)

so every Halloween, Christmas, vacation, sporting event, hunting, camping, broken bones and first day of school… take a picture… post it… and then let your Facebook memories help you love your kids