This weekend I was one busy mom. As my children continue to grow, their activities become more and more diverse. Whereas a few years ago I would drop both of them at the same activities, with Tj entering his teenage years, his interests and Toriah’s are becoming different. This Saturday for instance, Tj was going for a teens retreat and Toriah had children’s church practice. I dropped them both at church and then went with Thayu, the baby, for a yard sale to look for toys for him.
In the afternoon, I took Toriah and Thayu for a birthday party where Tj and Tony (my husband) were to join us later. Just the juggling was exhausting. And yet it is so exciting to be in the space I am in right now. Here I am feeling as I did 20 years ago and yet I am a mommy to a teenager, pre-teen and a baby. It is a blessing and also a balancing act as I try to meet the very different needs of each child.
One of the areas that we need to re-organise is our family devotion time. Every night before bed, we have a little Bible study and pray together then everyone goes off to bed. Over the years we have been using the same devotional and since Tj and Toriah are only two years apart and Thayu was a little baby, it has been okay. Recently though, Tony and I realised that we need to begin using different studies for the three boys. This happened because of the study we are currently using which addresses life issues for young people is ideal for Tj but some of the topics are difficult for Toriah to grasp.
When we first began, the topics were quite general and so Toriah could participate, but once we got into issues of dating and sexuality, we lost him.
I remember two nights ago we were discussing sexuality, hormones, and abstinence. As soon as the ‘s’ word was mentioned he put his hands over his ears and said “Wow mom, I am only ten years old am not yet a grown man. Do I really need to hear this?” He had a point, perhaps we need to be discussing things that are within his realm of experiences and realities. The same goes for Thayu; even though he cannot fully comprehend much, he is impressed with pictures and it is time to orient him towards this important family ritual.
Another area that needs to be adjusted is family entertainment. I find it amazing that at two and four, three and five or even six and eight, children are not so different yet a 10-year-old and 12 going 13-year-old are in such different worlds. Some of the programmes that Tj loved watching just a year ago, he now finds juvenile and sometimes I have to arbitrate fights because he found Toriah watching something and referred to it as childish. Sometimes I find myself having such high expectations for Toriah and Tony has to remind me that he is only ten not thirteen.
So once more I find myself in that space where I have to grow and stretch and adjust and I am reminded that growing never stops, as my children grow, so must I.