Monday, February 16, 2009

Lessons from a ....Child?

Well, while lambing is momentarily over for now, I still have several more to lamb but they will not be delivering for another month or so, I have finally found time to get some rest and catch up on some fun stuff. Mainly my idea of fun, is working dogs, but yesterday it was horse back riding. Kyle has been on my case for awhile, wanting to go riding. While I was really loath to go down ( ha! Go down, its like a 60 foot walk from my front door to their pasture gate!) and catch the mares, haul out saddles and tack, groom and then spend 3 or 4 hours in the saddle when I could have been working dogs instead, I finally gave in under the condition that he help round up and catch the horses, and haul out the saddles from the tack shed and clean them up and groom the horses. Lucky for him, the horses were in a compliant mood yesterday and were easily caught with the aide of the coveted blue bucket O grain.
The horses looked good, nice and fat and woolie, and soooo out of shape. Their feet looked decent, so I didn't feel any sudden compulsions to get out the nippers. My back is thanking me for that I'm sure. He was quite the trooper, very uncharacteristic of himself, scurrying around getting things done,and going the extra mile to make sure all was in ready before he came and told me he was ready. He really wanted to ride, and no amount of extra work was going to deter him, darn it! What started out as what I grudgingly felt was a sacrifice of my time and energy, taking him riding, actually turned out to be quite an entertaining and eye opening day. Its been awhile since he and I had done anything we mutually enjoyed together, and Id forgotten what a character my son really is! At 2 months shy of being 14 yrs old, he is less of a child these days,and more like a real person! Imagine my surprise! I hadn't laughed so hard in quite some time. He has a quick wit and a hell of a sense of humor, and I have some how been missing that while being caught up in so many other aspects of life and work. The grown up world, the bill paying, grocery buying, trying to make ends meet world,that boys his age aren't exactly included in. We talked and joked, and it was nice to find out all the things going on in his life and his mind, that we barley bother to talk about at home. What a kid! I am surprised at the things he is aware of, and has such a firm grasp of mentally, be it his views on politics, gas prices, (or do those go hand in hand?) school, goals, money, lots of things that I didn't think he even thought about. Mainly because he keeps his nose stuck in front of a TV. book or video game most of the time. I'm wondering where my little boy went, especially when faced with the young man I spent the day with yesterday. His brother Linzy and his sister Tammi are 29 and 26 yrs old, so Ive had years of them being grown ups so it isn't such a shock when one calls me up with grown up problems or complaints. I'm use to it by now. But Kyle has always been the baby, the last one, the youngest. It was always the goal to get the kids grown, and yes, gone, moved out and ready to start a life of their own, but time seems to have slipped up way to quickly for me with Kyle. Just a minuet ago he was a child, and now, he is teetering some where between being an adolescent, and having to have "the talk"! There was discussion about getting a drivers license, and year books and prom dates! The economy, rising prices of feed and hay, you name it, topics just rolled off our tongues, and discussions, intelligent discussions were had. I'm still reeling. After everyone had gone to bed last night, I had time to sit back and be alone to reflect and think. Regroup the image of who and what my son was and now is. It is a startling contrast to what I started the day out thinking, as well as a severe wake up call for me. Somewhere, sometime, somehow, I blinked and missed it. That transformation that turned him into some thing, some one more than I thought he was. I cant remember this happening with his brother and sister. I was never shocked at their maturity, maybe because I expected it, and wanted it, and deep down, maybe I'm not sure I am looking forward to an empty nest, and so have subconsciously put off thinking it would happen as long as I still had Kyle home with me. But the stark realization that we have more years behind us than we have in front of us before he fledges from the nest, well...has caught me unaware. Through this however, I have come to the realization, that I need to spend more time with my son. We need to talk more, and on a different level than "clean your room," and, "because I'm mom and I said so!" Of course, I still need to parent, but its going to have to go to a whole new level. Is it any wonder he has become so frustrated with me, accusing me of treating him like a child all the time. I have been! Which also brings me to wondering if I have been holding him back from life experiences. Sheltering him to much, not allowing him some of the freedoms he claims his friends have. After successfully fledging two already, you'd think I kinda had the hang of things by now.
I think Kyle knew this day was coming. I think he had a plan, and that is why he has been so relentless in trying to get me to spend a day a horse back with him. He knows how I am when I ride. I'm relaxed and open, friendly and happy when up on a horse, and things don't anger me as easily. I'm in a zen place when riding, and he has witnessed this phenomenon and so decided this would be the best place to spring the facts on me. Do I think he is this clever? Well,... after yesterday, yes I do think he is, and from now on, I'm going to have to pay a lot closer attention to him, before I blink again, and its graduation day!


Anonymous said...

Growing up sometimes happens overnight and sometimes takes years. Some adults are still going through the process of growing up. Kyle seems to be in a hurry to be a man. He will need your help, and patience, as he finds his way. Teach him well to be a "gentle"man. He sure looks like a great cowboy! Sits a horse well!

Samantha ~ Holly and Zac ~ said...

That sounds like it was a really lovely day you two had. You are obviously really close to your family and get on really well with Kyle.

That is a lovely photo of him.

BCxFour said...

Darci, I hear where you are coming from. It is so wonderful to see them spread their wings and grow - then on the other hand you look back and think "what happened, where did it go?". My kids are 21, 17, 15, 13 & 10. One out of the nest and four more to go. My sons amaze me every day with their new thoughts, opinions and actics. They are becoming little men right before my eyes. I was almost brought to tears by a memory a few days ago. I remembered the last time my 17 y/o son reached for and held my hand. He was he is to grown up for that kind of nonsense (as he calls it). My daughter is out of the house already and I pray for her every day - that just a smidgen of the common sense I tried to teach her stuck to her brain. My biggest concern is that, did I do my job well enough? Did I teach them what I should?

You are so right to cherish those days like you spent with Kyle, the older they get, as you know, they evolve into something altogether different.