Childhood & Sunsets – Fresh Cut Photography, Red Deer, Alberta, Central Alberta

“Sunsets, like childhood, are viewed with wonder not just because they are beautiful but because they are fleeting.”
Richard Paul Evans author of The Gift

I feel like we have entered the twilight of my children’s childhood.

My oldest is 15 and now in Grade 10. He is facing big decisions and bigger problems than ever. He is changing daily and as his parents it is our job to help him navigate the turmoil that is being a teenager. And it is hard! I don’t think anyone can truly understand just how complicated and difficult parenting these years can be. I know I didn’t get it until now, fully immersed in the trenches of teenager hood.

Our next oldest child is going to be a teenager soon. He is a completely different child than his older brother and and I feel like the issues we will face with him will be completely different but just as complicated and confusing. Luckily, we have two more younger children at home. They are still, for the most part, enjoying the innocence of their childhood and the wonder of the newness of living life.

Somedays I am left wondering if having children is worthwhile. No one says things like this…but sometimes I am tired of hiding behind all the cliches we say to each other to convince each other that we are ok. But, truth be told, some days I struggle to find the right words to say or the right actions to take. Parenting is as struggle to teach your kids morals and values, while allowing them to explore who they are and also keeping yourself sane. It is a balancing act that sometimes, I admit, I fail at. Sometimes should maybe be replaced with daily. I feel like I fail one of my kids on a daily basis. Luckily (?) for me, there are 4 of them so it is rarely the same one.

That being said, in this season of constant doubts, I am grateful to be able to capture small moments of my children like those pictured above. Moments where we pause to remember who they are in that exact moment. So one day we can look back and see that we did breath. That we did love. And that we did find joy. So much of life is rushing from one thing to the other that we often forget to just be.

I hope when my children look back on their childhoods they remember good times, constant love and a peace knowing that no matter what transpired we always had their best interest at heart. But, I am sure like most children, once they are grown and have children of their own they will try to correct all the injustices we caused by parenting their children completely different. But, it is my hope, that in those moments they will realize the complicated choices we, as parents, have to make and maybe then they will understand us a bit more. I know I am constantly learning. Constantly reaching for a better understanding of my children and of myself in hopes to be the best I can for them.

XOXO Allyson

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