June 23, 2009

Everyone's Getting Old But Me

My elder oldest daughter turned 33 the other day. Thirty-three - damn, she's old (And elder makes her sound older, and it's awfully pretentious!)!

It doesn't seem like she can be that old already. I'm not saying that I remember her being a little girl like it was yesterday, but it didn't happen that long ago - did it?

Shannon was a fussy little baby. She wouldn't sleep at night when she was an infant. There would be nights when I'd hold her in the rocking chair and cry while she cried, she was that difficult. I was a young mom. Having Shannon was where I learned the lesson of what 24/7 meant (oh, I hate that phrase, by the way). I often felt unprepared for the responsibilities of always being on mom duty. Her dad was a workaholic; in reality, I was a single mom with a live-in funding source.

She was my first baby, the practice child. The one I made the most mistakes with. Despite that, she loved me. She had opinions, she knew what she wanted. My job was decoding her cries and accepting her moods.

She enjoyed being an only child. For 29 months, she had my undivided attention. When I gave birth to her sister, Erin, my mother-in-law told her that she had a little sister. Shannon's response? "I don't want to hear it!" That set the tenor for their entire relationship.

Shannon's teen years were fraught with slamming doors and tears. Nobody understood her, least of all, me. I was glad when calmer days reigned.

She was a shy child - she's still shy. When she was in college, she sent me a tape of Celine Dion's "Because You Loved Me". She said that I was her voice when she could not speak.

During my pregnancy with The Boy, she would come home from college with cute little onesies and little gifts. She helped take care of The Boy when we came home from the hospital. She cared for him while I slept. She shared her room with him, she gave up valuable bedroom real estate for his crib.

She's married now, and has two children of her own. She works fulltime, so she doesn't get to spend as much time with her kids as I did with her. Jordyn, my 5 year old granddaughter, is a lot like her mother: opinionated, knows what she wants. She's not as shy as Shannon. She's funny, too. Cameron, my grandson, will be 4 next month. He loves cars and Thomas the Tank Engine. He is a busy little boy.

I haven't blogged about Shannon and her family before. I used to live near them in the Evil Empire State - and then they moved to FL. I miss them...and I've not tried to put those feelings into words. Another day, another posting, I guess.

Birthdays were always a big deal to Shannon when she was a child - we could expect at least one big meltdown at her birthday party, it seems the celebration never lived up to what she had in her mind. On her birthday on Monday, she spent the day at Disney World. I hope it lived up to her expectations. Happy Birthday, Shannon!


4 comments:

  1. The whole time I read this I thought...one day this will be me. I already talk about how fast the last 7 years have gone with my oldest daughter. So much of your daughter's personality is like my oldest's too.

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  2. We try so hard on the first one, we don't ever want to screw up. We want them to be happy...always. I think we do them a big disservice. Maybe if I had been more relaxed, she would have been, too?

    I've been doing this mom thing for 33 years, and I don't think I'll ever be done. The Boy will be 14 next month - I still have years to go! Yikes!

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  3. time makes are older but being old is indeed a decision.
    We should let age prevent us from anything:
    http://www.wahtwasdone.com

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  4. My goodness,, that was a nice story. I have got to call my oldest "little girl" (37). I want to talk to her. thnx,, glenn

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