Cole is 18.

My #4 is 18 years old.

Cole was born in a rush…..I didn’t think I was in true labor and one push-> he was out.

Cole is going to start his senior year. We have had a rough year because it seems all teenage boys have to break away from their mom. It’s difficult for all involved and I keep having to go through this because I had 4 boys all within a short time. I have “post traumatic teen disorder” ( PTTD). Mom’s of Teens will understand this. I coined that term myself…and I think I need to write a book about it.

So I could go on and on about all of the teen things I dislike….but that doesn’t seem fitting for a birthday post? does it? I just struggle so much during these teen years. I think I am a terrible mom of teens because I have a hard time letting go. I wish I could freeze time to when they were little.

Instead I will focus on the good things because that is the only thing that gets me through each day. It’s a good thing that I am a “silver lining’ type of person. LOL

Cole likes routine, structure and hates change. He likes to succeed and hates to fail. So much in fact he holds himself back from challenges out of fear. Cole has always been the kid who likes to dress well and match his clothes. Where most of my boys just wear whatever is semi-clean and handy. He takes pride in how he looks. In fact I think he has more shoes than I do.

Cole has always been a good student and athlete. He takes pride in his car and he always shows up to work early. He hates to be late. No matter if it is work, sports ,school ect.

Cole puts unreasonable expectations on himself…which in turn means that he puts them on everyone else in his life as well. Which is just part of the growing -maturing process….to learn that expectations are a killer. I see so many things in him that I have struggled with in my life. No matter how much you try to protect your kids …they are still cursed with certain things….and I have to say that watching my kid struggle with certain things is very painful. It’s also watching him struggle with certain curses that he got from his dad. It seems that he kind of got some of our worst qualities and he gets to sort these things out as an adult and I just know it’s going to be a rough road for him in some cases. I think he is going to feel like a lot of people let him down…..and mainly that he lets himself down. All of these qualities can be used in a positive way….but experience has taught me that our best qualities are also our worst. You have to take the good with the bad…and until we know that for ourselves..it’s a struggle.

But when I think about this…he has been this way his whole life. When his dad and I divorced…he took it so hard and he was only 2 years old. The night terrors and asthma started. Then when I started taking him to daycare instead of Grandma & grandpa during the day….he cried everyday for 40 days. Every-single-day. We thought he would stop after a week and adjust. Nope. 40 days it took him to adjust to a new schedule as a 2 year old. He has always been this way. His older brother, Bryce would just jump into things without thinking….always. Cole would step back-watch, take in all of the info….and see what would happen and then decide.

Cole hates to be hated. So he is somewhat of a people pleaser…not always in a good way because he hates confrontation. So he won’t speak up or voice his concerns in relationships. This drives me bonkers on all levels.

But on some level since he hates pain so much …I wonder if he will learn quickly on big things so he can avoid pain. Some of my older kids seem to like pain since they seem to choose a hard way of life at every turn. I have high hopes for Cole.

Cole is very sensitive. Which is good in one way ….but since he doesn’t express himself well,  I think it builds up. ( I am not sure I am focusing on all of the “good” things…this is difficult right now) I guess it’s best to focus on what is REAL in this time of our lives because it’s a way to document our Journey.

Cole is trying to find his way and he is stumbling along the way. He is trying to figure out his place in our Mother/Son relationship which is difficult. He is trying to figure out how to be an older brother to his sister without harming her and in his words he is trying to “mentor” her and love her. He is trying to be a good brother to his very strong willed brothers who seem to make every terrible mistake…he is trying to figure out loyalty while learning that we all have failures. You can still be loyal to flawed people. He is really struggling with this.   He seems to be getting all of these real lessons at once…that he is not willing to accept yet. It’s a struggle for him.

I won’t say that he is taking all of these lessons in stride ….but I will say that he is thoughtful and really trying to understand them. He is really trying to “work’ through things rather than blow them off. He hates turmoil and he really does strive to make things better in all aspects of his life. He is misguided in many ways as to how to fix it…but he is 18 and  trying. That’s more than I can say for some. Cole willingly goes to counseling to help work on our communication issues. It makes us both feel better.

No matter what happens along the way I am proud of Cole and know that he will find his way ->stumbles and all. Somehow we all do.     I wish I had this GLOWING and sunshine and roses post for his 18th birthday. But this is real life and things have hit us hard lately. what I do know is that we are bonded…otherwise this wouldn’t be so hard on both of us. He has always had my heart and he has always surprised me along the way.

What I love most about him is that he is thoughtful. He will think about things and he will try to communicate. It might take him a bit to muster up the courage …but when he is ready he will do it. He is still a guy and doesn’t communicate well..but he will try more than a typical guy. I like that he will try to do a good job. He really thrives under a person who is honest and sticks to their word. I hope that this last year has been a struggle enough to refine him and make him think straight. we have had so many changes so quickly and for a person who hates change..it’s been difficult. With this being his senior year..there is only more changes looming. I know we will make it through…..white knuckles, maybe…but we will.

I love you Cole!

infinity!

I hope you have a great year! Happy Birthday. Here’s to adulthood. Kind of. 🙂

Love always Mom.

 

 

 

 

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