My junior high girls are climbing out of their elementary school shells quickly, dipping their toes in the water just between childhood and adolescence. I am enjoying their questions, their slightly cautious but daring spirits, and the time I am able to spend asking them questions, learning about who they are.
Our ("our" refers to "mine and Tim's." I use possessive words because the group I'm with is considered family.) graduate-counselors are fantastic. They've been spending a lot time loving the kids intentionally. The kids love them. And? The fact that they are older teenagers who love these kids without reserve and without an agenda is so valuable. (On a me-centered note, I'm loving the extra time with Dan and Danielle. Loving it.)
I've observed that:
- I really enjoy long walks on the beach. However cliche, it's true, and I did not know it before this week.
- Mini-golf can be fun. I hated it up until last night, when I went with my kids. And had a blast.
- Junior highers are in a difficult place. They are still children, but they're becoming teenagers. They need a little freedom, a little encouragement, but sometimes? They need to be babied. Just a little bit.
- I am no longer paranoid about saying or doing the "wrong" thing when I'm with my girls (and boys). My time with them seems to be more and more about being intentional about truly loving when I am with them than doing everything "right."
- True love has many different faces.
- Sometimes, it's just a good idea to bite my tongue.
- Many junior highers want an adventure. Some of them just need an invitation.
Many more words to come. But not right now. Right now? I'm going to go live life with my girls.