Fall, Tween, and Carpe Diem; Musings of a Single Mom

2_web_edited-1-much-smaller-200.jpgOnly a week + until school starts again and change is in the air. This year, my daughter is saying goodbye to some friends. Sasha has moved with her mom to Windsor, Ontario, while mom pursues a law degree (dad is staying in Toronto to hold down the fort) and Mae is off to junior high.

And for Simone, it’s her last year of junior school: Grade 6.

I don’t think she can quite believe it either. In 10 short months she’ll graduate and be on the brink of adolescence.

What is it about this age that is so stirring?

You catch glimpses of the adult whom the child will become. Then, out of nowhere, the baby erupts. The mailbox offers up J14 and Twist (plastic-wrapped digests of Jonas Brothers news examined in solitude) but the primping bunny on Bambi is so cute that I must come over and watch it too.

If I were to represent this stage of life on one of those line graphs made popular by Indexed, it would be:

Vertical grid: “Asking them”

Horizontal grid: “Keeping your mouth shut”

A dot planted dead-centre would say TWEEN CHALLENGE.

I don’t actually dread adolescence as much as some parents seem to. Maybe that’s because there’s just one of me, and two people in an apartment with no buffer have a hard time staying mad at each other. We do bicker but we always make up.

Or maybe it’s because I’ve got friends with teens and twenty-somethings and they seem pretty blasé about everything. (Perhaps that’s what adolescence does to parents: it numbs them.)

But I must admit, I’d like a few more summers like this one where clothing hasn’t been calculus and dirty hair can simply be shrugged off. Where the chattering on the phone and the giggling at the sleepovers does a little dance on my brain and tugs at the corners of my mouth.

So I breathe in the air of change a little wistfully these days. But that’s OK too.

It wouldn’t be fall without a little carpe diem.

Jessica Pegis, aka,  O Solo Mama and

Trenchcoat Single Mom