Monday, June 09, 2008

She Held My Hand

My daughter has two days left in the sixth grade. She turned twelve years old two months ago. She's almost a teenager.
Many people have said something to me like, "Yeah, Karen, you may think girls are easy now. But wait until she's a teen!" Part of me - thinking back to what I was like when I was a teen - has considered their threats words of warning, and contemplated finding a nice closet in which to lock her up until she passes adolescence.
Then I have experiences with Elizabeth like the ones over the past few days, and I think, Ahhh, this is sweet. These years aren't going to be so scary!
Sure, she's a little weird sometimes. She skips around the house, flopping her arms around, making strange noises, and I look at her wondering, Where did she come from??!!
Other times my dear daughter will start crying at the stupidest most insignificant little thing and I am reminded her hormones are working overtime, and things may start getting crazy around here soon.

But when my fear starts setting in, I will choose to remember her holding my hand.

Friday night Brian and the boys were gone, so Elizabeth and I went to Subway to split a $5 footlong. As we got out of the van and were walking into the store, she reached out and held my hand. And what really happened is she was holding my heart.
After we came home and ate, we watched a movie together. And my nearly-teenage daughter cuddled up with me on the couch and shared her Whoppers with me.

Sunday we were at my mother-in-law's church and Elizabeth didn't want to go to the junior high group, so she sat with us during the service. And when we were walking out, she reached over and held my hand again.

Today I was a chaperon for the sixth grade field trip to the YMCA. The first thing Elizabeth said to me this morning was, "Mom, will you do everything with me today?" I told her I would probably have other responsibilities but I would do my best to spend time with her, and she seemed OK with that answer.
I knew she was happy to have me attending the field trip, but I did wonder how she would relate to me in the presence of her friends.
She was just as sweet.
When I was released from my exchange-shoes-for-skates duty, I donned a pair of roller skates and joined Elizabeth in the rink. And, sure enough, she held my hand again. Because she loves me, or to keep me from falling, I am not sure.

But she held my hand in front of all her friends and classmates.

And many times walking through the Y, she came up behind me, slipped her arm through mine, and walked along beside me.

Yes. My daughter is almost a teenager. She acts rather strange at times, and tends toward being over-emotional other times.
But I will not fear the years ahead. I will not dread her journey through adolescence.

Because she is still willing to hold my hand.

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14 comments:

Amanda said...

Bless my heart!
You sure do have a gift with words!

My eyes swelled up with tears when I read, "...she was holding my heart..."

*gulp*

Many blessings-
Amanda

km said...

Soo sweet. I hope for the same with my little girl in 10 years.

luvmy4sons said...

That is precious. What a sweet daughter you have. You obviously hold her heart...I am sure you will always treasure this memory.

Coach J said...

Me and mine are still holding hands too. She's 11, and I wonder when it's all gonna go away, but for right now, I'm with you! :)

annie said...

Amanda will be 18 next month. We went to the store together a few days ago and she reached out to put her arm through mine. It can stay sweet :)

Dakota's Mom said...

What great moments to etch into memory!

Susan Kelly Skitt said...

Because she knows you love her :) The journey raising children at times can be difficult, but it is sooooo worth it. Thanks for sharing some precious moments with us dear Mommy.

Happyhome said...

I am right there with you Karen! How thankful I am that my oldest son is still willing to hold my hand and give hugs and kisses. I pray we can continue to hold their hearts long after they stop holding our hands.

Hugs,

Ang

Nicki said...

Oh Karen......having three of these "girls" I know how much that means to you!!! That is SOOO precious!!!

Shane, Greta, Seth and Gage Owens said...

Ok, thanks for the cry! That is SO incredibly sweet and a reflection of her love for YOU!
I can't wait for those days with my little girl.
I will admit that I love those moments even now with my little BOYS!

Nancy said...

This is my first visit to your blog and this post touches my heart deeply. My nineteen year old is Autistic and is rarely able to show affection, but I am absolutely thrilled you get to experience this joy. I am truly happy for you!

You are blessed and I pray the Lord continues to bless you abundantly. You are a wonderful mother no doubt.

In Him,
Nancy

Elizabeth said...

my sweet tulip (almost 14 mos old) reached for my hand today (she has just learned to proficiently walk) and when I gave her my hand she giggled with glee. i hope that sweet spirit remains as long as your Elizabeth's. what a special story...rollerskating, holding hands with one of the loves of your life...your daughter. i can hardly think of anything sweeter at the moment.

Alisun said...

At 8 we still have the hand holding and I pray that at 12 and up we have the heart holding, it brings tears to my eyes to dream of this. Wonderful post!

musicmom325 said...

That is very sweet. Hopefully, it will continue to be sweet once she starts high school. I think I remember turning against my parents around that time. haha.