Yesterday I had a major wake up call. Madeleine, my 14 year old, reminded me that we have a parent/student orientation at the High School tonight for incoming freshman. I had completely forgotten about this, but she was right. There it was, in my handwriting, in the family
Then it hit me. My wake up call. Madeleine would be in HIGH SCHOOL in September. HIGH SCHOOL! Of course, intellectually I knew that she would be a freshman next year. And that she would be changing schools. I'm not sad or emotional about this, but stunned. So, why does the fact that she will be a High Schooler and not a Middle Schooler bring me up short? My friends think it's because she's my baby. I don't know, though. She is my youngest child, true. But, I've never thought of her as my "baby". Maybe when you only have 2 kids and they are 2 1/2 years apart, the youngest one isn't really a baby in comparison to the oldest. Certainly, I never babied her. She would not have stood for that. Even as a baby, she was not one to be cuddled and cooed over. She was independent and feisty from the get go.
When I really stop and think about it, I think what is so shocking is that HS has gone by so quickly for Katie, my older daughter. And I've seen how much she has grown and changed from a freshman to a junior. And some of those changes have been painful. Madeleine is at such a cool stage in her life right now. She has a wonderful group of friends, she is starting to spread her wings socially and she is just a delight. I guess I want to hold on to that a little bit longer. I'm not anxious for her to become more independent and pull away from Geoff and me. I guess I just want to hold on to her for awhile longer. Maybe she is my baby afterall.