Watching my children grow up has brought me such joy. I've never been one of those mothers who felt saddened that my kids were growing up. Starting kindergarten or Grade 1 were happy occasions, reaching milestones were celebrated, and nothing made me happier than watching my children reach their goals and become mini adults.
However, recently I experienced one change. One change that has me teary-eyed just at the thought of it. That was the day my boy started calling me "mom".
To some, this probably isn’t a big deal, but in our house I have always been referred to as "mommy" or "mama" and I've loved it. I'm 40 and I still refer to my own mother as "mommy", so I always assumed my kids would do the same, but maybe it's different for boys.
Last month, I traveled with my son to Milan, Italy, for a soccer tournament with his team. This was the first time that he was away with friends, in his own room, eating meals on his own and being responsible for himself. It was the first time I didn't control what he ate, when he slept, when he showered and changed. I didn’t tuck him in a night, give him a good night kiss or read him a book. He was growing up and I was downgraded to chaperon. I’d see him at the soccer pitch and cheer him on but didn’t really get to chat with him. When we did get to see each other, he called me "mom".
"Mom" - a dagger-to-the-heart reminder that my first born is no longer a baby. That he no longer needs me to be responsible for his every move. "Mom" - a reminder that he is growing up and it won't be long before he’s off to high school and then university. "Mom", a reminder that I have to let go a little and reassure myself that these are good changes and I should embrace them like I embraced the many changes in the past.
I guess in the grand scheme of things, it’s not so bad. There are worse things I can be called so I will take being called "mom" in public. Just as long as he doesn't start calling me by my first name, I will also make it through this new milestone.
**This blog post was written by Clara Power - mom of two and personal travel advisor at Clara Power TPI Travel. Since travel is her passion, Clara has visited over 35 countries and almost every continent.**