When I gave birth to my oldest son all I could think was please let me remember to feed him. I had a hamster and several fish that didn't fare so well on my ability to remember that they needed to eat.
When he was 6 years old I figured I was getting pretty good at keeping him alive I should have another one. After all I only had to feed them for 18 years. Little did I know, feeding them would be the easy part. And I don' t have any idea why I was delusional enough to think that at 18 years old someone flips a magic switch and they no longer need to eat.
I'm not patting myself on the back just yet but it's worth noting that neither of them starved to death (despite my inability to boil water or cook anything outside of the microwave).
Today I went to yet another parent/teacher conference for Nick. As he and I wound our way through a jungle of teenagers to the safety of the guidance office we passed a boy with his tongue so far down a girls throat that he must have been trying to lick her liver. I wanted to pull them apart and demand their parents phone numbers so that I could enlighten them on the self, sex education class that was going at the bottom of the stairs after school. Except that could have been my kid.
A few years ago I had a friend who's son graduated from high school and moved into a college dorm. Her biggest concern was that he would fall asleep with his contacts in and she wouldn't be there to wake him up and remind him to take them out before he went to bed. That seemed silly. Except now Chris is looking at apartments with friends and all I can think is who's going to check on him while he's sleeping and make sure he is still breathing. I spent a lot of years making sure I kept him alive and now he could just stop breathing and I wouldn't know it!
I don't expect anyone to understand why I check on my 14 and 20 year old sons every night (sometimes several times) to see if they're breathing, but any time I wake up at night I do. I'd say that being a mother takes away all rationale but I think it's just me.
Raising kids is HARD!
Much harder than keeping goldfish or hamsters alive.