This post is kind of like that song “Amazing Grace” in that it once was lost but now is found.

On the 3rd of this month, my first born child turned 15 1/2 years old.
He’s now old enough to get a drivers and a workers permit. He’s only 2 1/2 years away from legal adulthood. Soon enough, I’ll be able to hand him my car keys and say “go ahead and take the van to practice. BUT DON’T SPEED! And check your rear view mirror before making lane changes! And always use your signals! And don’t be flipping anyone off because there are crazy people out there who will shoot you! Oh, hell. Never mind, I’ll take you. Next time I’ll let you drive yourself, ok?”
I’m feeling very torn up inside over this. Like, if you were to call me and bring it up, I would probably do that thing where I would act like I was totally cool and not going to cry. My voice would crack and I would have to clear my throat and you’d be all “are you ok?” And I’d be all “I’m FINE!” And then two minutes later, I’d be full on sobbing because “I didn’t know he was going to grow up this fast! If I had known, I would have been more careful to remember every little detail about his childhood because I CAN’T REMEMBER WHAT HE SAID THAT ONE TIME IN KINDERGARTEN THAT MADE ALL OF THE TEACHERS LAUGH AND WHY DIDN’T I WRITE THAT IN A BABY BOOK SOMEWHERE?” And then you’d feel all awkward and try to think of excuses to hang up on me and you’d just shut the cell phone and email me later that night saying something like “Sorry about that. I was driving through a tunnel on that one road, you know, down there next to that one road that you wouldn’t know about anyway and our call got cut off because there’s no reception in that tunnel and damn if I still can’t get any service. I’ll try calling you sometime next year though ok?”
Fifteen and a half.
Yesterday, he was standing near the kitchen counter as I was putting dishes away. He was looking out the window while playing the air drums and humming a song. I stopped what I was doing and just watched him. I could see little traces of the sweet natured little baby that I once held in my arms, but mostly I saw a boy on the verge of adulthood and it took my breath away. Time stood still in that moment. And in my mind, I saw a slideshow of the years passing me by. I saw him sitting on the table at his first birthday party in his blue and white checkered jump suit as the family sang Happy Birthday to him. I saw him in his OshKosh overalls and tiny little cowboy boots. I saw him jumping around the living room doing “tricks” in his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle jumpsuit that I had bought for $2.00 at a thrift shop. I heard his soft little voice singing “You Are My Sunshine” while we drove around town doing errands. I saw his scared little eyes as I walked away, leaving him for the very first time at kindergarten. I saw him accepting his first (of many) citizenship awards in first grade. I saw him walking away from my car as I dropped him off at his first day of junior high. And then, I blinked and he was fifteen and a half.
It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that he will be driving soon. It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that he will be applying for a workers permit soon. It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that he will be bringing home a paycheck soon. It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that he sort of kind of has a girlfriend who texts and calls him 80 times a day and that “dating” is just around the corner. It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that graduation is less than 2 school years away. It’s hard to wrap my mind around the fact that when I first started this blog he looked like this:
And 6 years later, he looks like this:
My First Baby is Almost a Man
Fifteen and a half years– I knew that day would come eventually. I just had no idea it would come so quickly nor did I have any idea of the emotional punch it would pack.

55 thoughts on “This post is kind of like that song “Amazing Grace” in that it once was lost but now is found.

  1. dana michelle

    I’ve been up putzing on the computer since 4am-ish because I couldn’t sleep, and now I can’t sleep AND I’m crying. Thanks!
    No, really, thanks, because your posts like this about your kids always send shivers up my spine.
    Just… wow.

  2. Claire

    I’ve never met you – or him – but it’s apparent to me that he is one amazing individual. And so handsome too!
    The little boy may be gone, but look what you have now!

  3. Beverly

    He’s such a handsome boy. I think he looks a bit like you! And it’s pretty obvious that all of your love and attention has resulted in an amazing kid.
    My oldest is 19, second year of college, and when I call him a “boy”, he gets insulted. And then I cry!

  4. mrsdoxtater

    You have a very beautiful son!
    That was a very beautiful post, I actually cried, even though I don’t know you or your son, I cried. My girls are still young, but one day this will be me. I am not looking forward to that day…

  5. Michelle

    Hey, he’s grown up to be a pretty good-looking young man. I mean, you can see the teen angst and I’m-so-tough look in his eyes, but I think he’ll do fine.

  6. leeann

    Aw, bless you and bless him both! And don’t be fooled, the little boy will always still be in’ll just have them both!
    I think it is awesome that you started your blo six years ago. Six years of life and memories right here. That’s better than any baby book!

  7. Willow

    I’m so glad you managed to retrieve this post. Time races by in such a scary way sometimes, but what a great looking boy you have there.

  8. Kyla

    Oh, Y. This was just beautiful. I can’t believe your baby is so grown up, but it sounds like you’ve done a wonderful job raising him to be a good man.

  9. Headless Mom

    He is so handsome! But he doesn’t need the girls. Take it from the mom of a teenage girl. Way too much drama. 😉
    I’m still not talking about taking the Girl to college last week. Nope. Not gonna do it!

  10. Jennifer

    I know exactly how you feel. My middle son is almost 15 and 1/2. He is such a great kid, I hate to see him grow up, but proud that he is turning into a great young man. I just pray that he will always stay close to home.

  11. Chris

    Wow. I’m going through the same thing right now, too, with my son who’s 12. I’m already seeing the changes from boy to young man. He’s going through puberty right now, his voice is starting to crack a little and I find myself trying SO HARD to hold onto my little boy. As much as I love the young man he’s becoming, I’m not ready! So believe me when I tell you, I get you. I really do.

  12. Tammy

    Oh. That was just a total…. oomph to the gut type post. Thank you for sharing, and may I say, you’re writing is phenomenal. If I had you in my classes, you would get 100%. AND I’d read your stuff to the class. So they could all cry, too, and be jealous.

  13. justme

    I does go by fast! I just looked at my daughter that will be turning 21 in a little over a week and I think, What happened to 16? and then I look at my middle and say…. ahh there she is, 16. How did that happen? my baby, he just turned 13, now three months ago. In another 3 months he will be half way to 14 and my middle will be 17. WTF happened? I swear this past 8 years have just flashed by. And I want them back dang it!!

  14. crazymumma

    Oh this was so lovely.
    I am watching my older girl (but eleven), mature so quickly and often feel very sentimental. happy for her, but sentimental you know?

  15. margalit

    My kids just turned 16 a couple of weeks ago. Permits, one has a hob at Panera, they both are so grown up, and one is a senior and we’re picking out colleges. OMG, COLLEGE!
    I’ll hold your hand if you hold mine.

  16. robyn

    Ok, you have to stop this insanity because my oldest starts kindergarten next year and I’m a total sniffly pile of hormonal goo remembering him when you first started blogging and then looking at mine and “WAAAAAAH!” You told me how fast it would go but I didn’t get it ’til he skipped off for his first day of PreK4 and I just brought him home from the hospital!!!

  17. Kristina Carrell

    Very touching. I felt that way when my son turned 13 and it just keeps going by so fast. My daughter just turned 8. Time just keeps moving very fast these days. My son is 6′ tall and I can’t imagine what he’s gonna look like when he’s 18. My daughter is almost as tall as me and I’m 5’3. They grow up way too fast sometimes. It can be sad, but then again that’s what kids tend to do. I hope you’re well Y and God Bless you and your family.

  18. Amy

    I’m with you sister. My dd is 4 years younger than your son, but yesterday I had a similar experience. I was dropping her off at a friend’s house and I just sat and watched her go up the driveway and to the door.
    She has such a grown-up confidence about her. And a sense of style that she didn’t get from me. And I felt a little tug at my heart and thought, “how did she get to be so old?”

  19. paula

    great thanks now you have me crying this morning! My son is only 8 and it scare me how quickly the time has gone by for us I can’t even imagine driving

  20. tara

    such a sweet post, i’m so glad it was found!!! it makes my hormonal pregnant self want to go squeeze my little almost 3 year old in the other room who kept me up most of the night and is happily chatting her daddy’s ear off (wearing a sundress and winter hat, of course). in fact…….

  21. Helen

    Oh Y….there are so many advantages to having boys who become men ( let’s not talk about the girls growing up, that is very scary!) My 2 oldest, now 21 and 23 in the past 3 months have given me, because they love me and for no other reason, a super duper side by side fridge freezer and a 42″ plasma screen TV and home cinema system and ..wait for this one A GRANDBABY! And those things are SO GREAT cause you get to love them and squish them and kiss them to bits and then GIVE THEM BACK! You hand them over when they cry and sit and watch the huge TV while thinking just how bloody marvellous it is that yours are all grown up. ( unless you did what I did and had another 3 that are still very little and will be here for years and years yet!)
    I love being the mum of men, it is unbeatable. It just gets better!

  22. jyl @ mommygossip

    A friend recommended your site. Glad I stopped by. My boys are only 7 and 5, but as I sent the youngest off to all-day kindergarten a couple of weeks ago and almost entered the empty-nester’s club, I found myself at once wanting to turn back the clock. Then, I remembered diapers and potty training and working 60-hour weeks while trying to raise them and all of a sudden was super grateful to have them where they are all–growing, giggling, and in grade school!
    Lovely post. Glad I stopped by.

  23. deb from ny

    Still checking in although I rarely comment. How’s grandpa doing? I have been thinking of the both of you. My boy is 16 1/2 and a junior. I know exactly how you feel. He has a junior license and will be able to drive without an adult in Dec. Here in NY, you cannot drive w/o an adult until you are 17. It is my biggest fear. I am truly frightened by the whole thing. Hope you are doing well.

  24. lani

    Ok… I think it’s time for me to have another baby. Just so when I blink, I still have one around when the older two leave the house. *sigh* Very nice post, Y.

  25. dianna

    I’m crying…Hubby is giving me the “You’re nuts” look.
    Sometimes when my 8yr old daughter is quietly concentrating, reading, etc. I get the opposite experience. Sometimes I can see the teenager in her face, the young lady. Maybe it’s that she’s not being as animated as I’m used to seeing her…I don’t know. Those moments make me realize that I need to drink in every minute.
    You have a handsome boy mom 🙂

  26. The Stiletto Mom

    So glad I read this. Just this morning as I was getting my almost 10 yr old boy ready for school, his voice cracked for the first time and I realized that slowly his voice has been getting deeper and pretty soon that squeaky sweetness will be gone. And now, I must go cry another river of tears…ugh! Why do they grow up so fast?!?

  27. bessie.viola

    Wow, this gave me chills. Your boy has grown so much – I just started reading, but the pictures you displayed show it perfectly. Your little boy is now a handsome young man!
    People always say “it goes so fast…” Thanks for the reminder today to stop and enjoy the moment.

  28. Jesseeezmom

    It’s so funny when we are young time seems to go slow, waiting for Christmas, Halloween,etc.. Then when we have children the time flies by so amazingly fast. Our daughter (we only have one) is 23 and it seems like just yesterday was her first day of kindegarten. The best advice anyone ever gave me was to enjoy every minute because life goes by so quickly. Great post on the reality of being a Mom

  29. wdc

    And now I’m crying. I have a 3yr old little boy. Your post made me realize that the things I am watching (and the things driving me crazy!) now will be the same things I remember 12 years from now. This time will pass faster than I know.
    Your son is growing up into a great man. He’s as handsome as he was cute when he was 7.
    What a great post.

  30. supertiff

    now you’re making me feel old, too! i guess i didn’t realize that i’d been reading that long…now i’m all: holy crap! when did that happen!
    hang in there, sister. they get older and smarter, but that only means you’re doing your job.

  31. Missie

    You said so eloquently what I have been feeling for awhile. My baby boy is 12 1/2 and as tall as me. I don’t need to even slightly bend to hug him anymore. I miss that. I miss my baby. But I enjoy my almost-teen….most of the time.

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