Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Sweet 16

Hard to believe, but my baby girl is turning 16 this Friday. Scary.

This is opening up a whole new world that I am not sure I am ready to face. She will now be permitted to date. She will likely have her driver's license by the end of summer. She even applied for a part-time job to supplement her babysitting income and is saving for a school trip to Europe next summer.

Perhaps now would be a good time to look into convent school enrollment.

I am happy to admit, however, that she has grown into a responsible young woman. She has never had a detention in school, maintains a 3.8 grade point average and received the highest score on the PLAN standardized test in the entire sophomore class. Shannon has already gotten recruitment letters from about 30 colleges, including Columbia, Brown, Duke, Vanderbilt and the University of Miami.

She is generally respectful and follows our rules, usually does her chores and takes care of her responisbilities without complaining, and keeps busy with school and outside activites which keep her out of trouble.

Part of it, I am sure, has to do with strict parenting and clear expectations. But Cliff and I cannot take all the credit. All we can do as parents is set them on a path and hope they will follow it.

There is a poem I have always thought describes the parenting experience perfectly:

"Little one, I wish two things:
To give you roots,
To give you wings."

The roots are established. Now the time is coming to start testing the wings. I have no doubt that as Shannon begins to venture out into the world, her options will be many, her successes great, and her wings will take her far.

Happy Birthday, Baby Girl!

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