I’ve been a mom now for 15 years.  We’ve laughed, cried, screamed, sang, travelled, walked, chased, swam and ran.  We’ve moved four times, competed in international Irish dance competitions, rented cabins, watched stars, studied for tests, played hockey, gone fishing, and read books.

I’ve realized that almost everything that upset us along the way is forgotten.  The spilled milk, broken windows, lost coats, schoolyard disagreements or seasonal stomach flus.

My oldest son found some old family videos recently and watching them made me realize how fast time has flown.  It’s incredible.  All those questions I had about sleeping through the night, walking, teething, talking or making friends seem so far away.  And it all worked out.

I used to think the era of diapers and high chairs was the busiest.  Now I realize the schedules of tweens and teens rival that.  And I know that one day it will all be quiet and I will miss the wild and precious times that surround me now.

As my kids blossom into young adults I hope they continue to be kind, brave, inspired, open-minded and engaged.  And I hope they remember these years as times of happiness, lessons, empathy and love.

Author Denis Waitley said, “The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence.”  I hope they fly to great heights and know that they can always come home.