They say that the days are long, but the years are short. And when I look over at the long limbed, gangly tween sitting opposite me, I completely understand.
Some days, I’m sure it was only five minutes ago that I was chasing around a wobbly toddler, listening as she discovered her first words and displayed a fierce independence she still shows today.
Other days seem far too long, and bedtime way too far away, as she throws those well crafted words of scorn over her shoulder as she stalks away. The independence is much the same. For better or worse.
I’d like to put it down to her being a tween. But with no clear understanding of what that means, or how to identify it, I thought I’d put down some thoughts on what being a tween might mean. Here’s what I came up with…
- Entertainment ranges from watching her favourite bloggers on YouTube through to playing Barbie and baby dolls; stuck between two worlds.
- She actually starts to need the crop tops she made me buy about a year ago. And now refuses to wear them.
- Ditto with deodorant.
- She’s starting to care more about how she looks and will spend a bunch of time googling the ‘right’ hair style for a particular event. Actually letting you do it? That’s another matter.
- She needs a phone. Everyone else has one and you’re actually the meanest mum ever if you don’t let her have one.
- She will get up early to watch the cartoons from her childhood when she thinks no-one will know, but will only admit to watching Netflix, if anyone asks.
- Boys are still gross. But they are less gross than they were two years ago.
- The last of her baby teeth are falling out and she no longer expects the tooth fairy to come. She’ll just hit you up for the cash instead.
- Santa and the Easter Bunny are either already extinct or they are on the endangered list.
- She’ll start to be embarrassed when you request a kiss in public, but she’ll still climb into your lap at night before bed for cuddles.
- The sass. The ‘tude. And the eye-rolling. Seriously.
- She’ll start talking in acronyms and slang with her friends. You probably won’t know what it means. In all honestly, neither will she.
- She’s suddenly grown out of all her little girl clothes, but is still too young for teen fashion. The dreaded in-between. Luckily Kim has found some options.
- Things that were previously judged on their opportunity for fun, are now judged on their cool factor.
- She’ll suddenly know everything. EVERYTHING. So don’t even bother.
This new world of tweendom has kind of snuck up on us and there’s no doubt that she’s now crossed the threshold; although as is the nature of tweens, it’s not without a backwards glance or five as she tries to find her place on the cusp of her teenage years.
I’m going to try and hold onto those moments for as long as I can while I get used to this new tall gangly girl, struggling to climb into my lap.
What things do you think signposts this change to the land of tweens?