Thursday, July 30, 2009


I remember the time not long ago when I was absolutely sure there wasn't anything harder than raising a child through the toddler years. Let's face it, what could be more challenging, tiring, frustrating or leave you feeling more clueless? There are the meltdowns to deal with. The egocentrism to conquer. The tantrums to diffuse. The potty training...need I say more.

Well, I think I am going to have to change my whole line of thinking. Because even though I have found my children's toddler years challenging, I am finding myself once again in unchartered territory. I have a 12 year old! EEK!

For those of you who have pre-teens and teens I'm sure you know exactly what I am talking about. Let's face it, what could be more challenging, tiring, frustrating or leave you feeling more clueless?! It's like toddlerhood amped up. There are still the same battles surfacing (minus the potty training).

My son is searching for independence; trying to figure out who he is. At times I feel like we are running head long into each other with our shields up ready to do battle. He trying to force his will and me trying to throw my experience and wisdom up to stop him.

I see the look in his eye during these times, questioning me and my authority. And it scares me! He is a wonderful kid and aims to please for the most part, but he can also be stubborn and sassy at times. I'm not trying to break him, just mold him into a responsible, God fearing young man. Yet, at times I feel like I am doing this blindfolded. Feeling clueless about a toddler, has nothing on the way I feel when I am trying to teach and guide my pre-teen son.

I feel like I'm walking a thin, precarious line. I want him to have some independence, but not too much too soon. I want him to feel he can talk with me and be open, yet he clams up (partly due to his introverted nature). I want him to be responsible. I want to wrap my arms around him and never let him go. I want him to desire to serve the Lord. But what if I mess up and push him to far one way or the other. Will he rebel and ditch every thing I have ever tried to teach him?

The only peace I can ever get from the myriad of questions floating in my brain is to take my son to the Lord. Place him at the Savior's feet and say, "He's yours Lord. Love him, protect him, guide him and mold him as only you can."

And suddenly I can bask in God's sweet peace and my feelings of helplessness fade away.


  1. My dear girl you have reached the entrance of the teen years where everything you do, say or think will be challenged. Hang in there on Gods promises, rest in his peace and guidance. My blessings to you on your first pre-teen. Have a super evening.

  2. I'll be there soon enough, and I'm a little anxious about it. My oldest is a duzie (or however you spell that) and I know it's only going to get harder. He's 9 now, and I already feel stressed about his character going in the right and not wrong direction. I'll be praying for you...just cling to the scriptures.

  3. Umm, the thought of the teen years is quite frightening to me even though they are a decade away! You're right, our kids need to be placed at His feet!

  4. those are such difficult years to go through...i would never wish to live them again. all the feelings of doubt and trying to fit in with your peers. but you are raising him in the Lord with many prayers and i'm sure he will come through them to be a very wonderful man!

  5. A wise woman once told me, it doesn't get easier as the children get bigger, the challenges change - I'm finding that out to be so very true. But nothing can be harder than potty training!!!!

  6. It's true. Sometimes all we can do is PRAY. I'm sure I'll say that even more when mine are embarking on the teen years.

    Peace, friend!

  7. Jenn reading your post made me shudder at the thought that my eight year old is really not all that far off from entering the point of no return to normal or at leat until he's not a teenager anymore! Hang in there girl! BTW I finally posted baby pics of our new little one!

  8. Just stopping by say hi and see how you are doing. You're dealing with a 12 year old! :) I have a 16 yr. old son and an almost 12 yr. old daughter. It's been different with my daughter than it was with my son. I really don't have any advice to offer. I'm still navigating the sea of adolescence/pre-teen years too!

    Hope you have a great day!

  9. Thanks for the wisdom-I have had the struggle of wondering whether I am breaking my son's will or his spirit, and my mom always says "You'll Know." Thank God He gives us this wisdom, when we allow Him to break our will:)

  10. I have an 11 year old and have been thrilled to see independence emerging as well confused by how to deal with the way he often goes about expressing his independence. But for the most part, he is a real joy to be around...just have to set him straight every so often. ;o)


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