Off The Beaten Path

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Georgia, United States
Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some people move our souls to dance. They awaken us to new understanding with the passing whisper of their wisdom. Some people make the sky more beautiful to gaze upon. They stay in our lives for awhile, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never ever the same.

Saturday, March 1

18th Birthday

They say that time passes quickly when you get older. It is true you know, it does seem to go by at an alarming rate once you reach middle age. Anyway, Ana had her 18th Birthday last Saturday and as I looked back over the last 18 years, they did go in fast forward. Twenty years ago when I moved to Los Angeles I was running away (with my two young sons) from a bad marriage. I had met Tom in August of the previous year and we had spoken with each other occasionally over the phone so when he invited me to move to Los Angeles and I accepted, it was more or less like going into the unknown. My sons didn't know Tom, but he was about as opposite from their father as a person could possibly get. I was approaching 40, had one grown son, another two sons, 11 and 6, well on their way, and it had not crossed my mind to start a new family. Tom had never been married, had no children, and it HAD crossed his mind. So when he said, "I would like to have a couple kids," it occurred to me that it might not even be possible. Well, that was December, by May I was expecting Ana; I was 40.

I had worked, before and after, having my other three children, and it wasn't easy. I had worked, cooked, cleaned, gardened, paid bills, grocery shopped, and spent a good portion of my time going from bar to bar trying to locate my drunken ex-husband. So this new marriage and pregnancy was a breeze by comparison. I had gotten a job at a bank as an AVP a week after I moved to LA, and I worked right up until the month Ana was born. I was supposed to return to work when she was three months old, but for many reasons, I just couldn't do it. Leaving a tiny new baby with someone that you just don't know wasn't something that I could do. So I kissed my career goodbye and became a full time housewife and mother. It would be many years before I had any desire to work outside the home again.

As we were all sharing in Ana's happy Saturday birthday it occurred to me, it had all turned out pretty well. And it was all worthwhile. Children benefit from having a parent at home. They really do. And they benefit double when they have TWO parents at home.


Akelamalu said...

Belated HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANA - may your life be the best you can imagine!

You are so right Nea - time does fly!

quilly said...

I agree. The best thing a parent can give their child is their time and positive attention.

Happy Birthday, Ana. Your parents gave you roots and wings. Use them well and you will go far even if you never roam too far from home.

Cindy said...

A belated Happy Birthday to Ana! I'm sure she will go far and do well-look who raised her.
Libby turns 16 this coming July and already has her study book from the DMV. Here we go again- another teenager to teach how to drive. After the last one, I'm a little scared...

Diana Joy said...

I totally agree!!! I stayed at home with all of my children until the youngest was nine and our bills forced me to go back to work.
However, my youngest is with me every day when she is sick or just needs a day with mommy. I will stop the world for her! She is also one of the 2 children left living with us :) The other six children are on there own and starting new lives with their partners :))))
Very few people realize how life is short and they grow up way too fast! My oldest is turning 27 this year :o
Anyway...enough of my babblings...
I just thought I would stop by and say hi!
Diana Joy

Dr.John said...

Betty would agree with you. She gave up teaching to raise our children and they turned out well.

Nea said...

Hi Akela, it was the fastest 18 years of my life, for Ana it seemed to take forever. I told her just wait and see if the next 18 go by as slowly, haha.

Nea said...

Hi quilly, I wish I could have been a stay at home Mom with the boys, I missed so much. And so did they.

Nea said...

Ana got her first credit card tonight, she is well on her way........SHE thinks having credit is the answer to everything. I told her, DO NOT charge more than you can pay off. She is such a kid.......haha

Nea said...

HI diana Joy, As much as I am glad Nick has a few years left at home, I always will be glad when he is out of school. he hasn't been as easy as Ana.

Kids are all SO DIFFERENT, aren't they?