Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Wednesday, June 03, 2009


by Stephanie Black

My oldest daughter just turned eighteen. I am now officially the parent of a legal adult. “I can check myself out of school,” she informed me. Not that she’s planning to (right, Amy?), but still, it’s strange that she could. And, she informed me, if she gets arrested, she’ll get taken to the adult jail. When you spend as much time as she does hanging around with the cops, I suppose you think in those terms. The police Explorer program is what she’s going to miss the most when she heads off to BYU at the end of the summer. She’s been a stalwart in the post for three years, and I’m betting she felt a lot more sentimental attending her last DARE culmination than she will attending her last high school class.

On Sunday, immediately following church we had a “senior appreciation” event where we honor our Young Women who are graduating, and that night was seminary graduation. I would like to announce, with a certain degree of (righteous) pride, that I didn’t cry at either event. And I can tear up pretty quickly! I would also like to announce that boy does our stake know how to do seminary graduation—it only lasted forty-five minutes. That’s awesomely efficient. High school graduation is at the end of next week, and it’s a big high school, so I’m betting it won’t last forty-five minutes. I probably won’t cry then either (unless it goes on as long as my husband’s MIT graduation, in which case I might weep from exhaustion), but I plan to cry when we drop her off at college, or maybe just when the rent and tuition bills come due.

Tears aside, I’m absolutely delighted that she’ll be at BYU, and I think she’ll have a wonderful experience there. I wouldn’t have it any other way, but I’m going to miss her. Thank heavens for cell phones and e-mail and Facebook—it’s become very easy to keep in touch. I would say thank heavens for texting, but I’ve never really gotten the hang of that. It’s probably like becoming a concert musician—you’ve got to train young, or forget it.

I’ve discovered that the older my kids get, the more time accelerates. In two years, my second daughter will head off to college. Ack! I could say that it’s strange to have kids this old, when it feels like I was just eighteen myself, but it doesn’t actually feel that way—eighteen seems like a long time ago (don’t you say a word, Rob. I’m not THAT old). And it was a long time ago that I was crawling under the crib, retrieving dropped binkies for the babies that have now grown into beautiful young ladies.

Now, when I’m crawling under the crib to retrieve binkies for my grandchildren, maybe that will feel strange . . .


At 6/03/2009 2:02 PM, Blogger Tristi Pinkston said...

You're not old enough to have a daughter that old. You liar, liar, pants on fire.

At 6/03/2009 5:10 PM, Blogger Anne Bradshaw said...

Ha! I was just thinking same thing as Tristi :-) No way are you old enough! Lucky you - when you get to 70 you'll look like 50.

At 6/03/2009 6:48 PM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Aw, thanks Tristi and Anne. You made my day!

At 6/03/2009 6:52 PM, Blogger J Scott Savage said...

Actually she only looks a little younger than she really is when you realize she had her first child at the age of nine.

At 6/03/2009 7:41 PM, Blogger L.T. Elliot said...

I had to re-read that first line several times. There's NO WAY you're old enough for an 18 year old daughter! You're a hottie! (Not that I'm hitting on you) Seriously, you're so gorgeous and youthful looking, I never would have guessed.

I'm glad you have such close relationships with your daughters and I'm proud of you for not crying at the graduations. I would have been a bawling mess but I have a while 'till my lil dudes graduate HS. =] I'll try and practice not falling apart in the mean time.

At 6/03/2009 8:35 PM, Blogger Annette Lyon said...

I'm suddenly very glad that my son will turn 18 soon AFTER his high school graduation . . .

At 6/04/2009 12:34 AM, Blogger Carolyn V. said...

I have to echo everyone! I had no idea you had children that age. You look way too young!

BYU is a wonderful place to go to school! She will love it. (I'm still going to school, but I won't tell you how old I am. That would just make me weep.)

At 6/04/2009 1:23 AM, Blogger Stephanie Black said...

Wow, Jeff, way to spill my secret :)

L.T. and Carolyn, you really know how to make the mother of a soon-to-be college student smile! Thank you so much! I want to print out these blog comments and frame them and hang them on my wall!

Carolyn, that's awesome that you're going to school. I have a friend close to my age who just graduated from BYU.

Annette, hee hee, yeah, less dangerous that way.

At 6/05/2009 12:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If per chance you see this, my youngest is doing graduate work at Virginia Tech after graduating from BYU and going on a mission. Do let yourself do some crying now because if you wait until you drop her off, if you are anything like me, there will be a second salt lake in Utah. Leaving her in Provo was one of the very hardest things I've ever done, partly because it was optional and I couldn't persuade myself that we really had to be over 2000 miles away. It was worth it.

But remember this: the only thing worse than having your child leave home is having a child that can't leave home!

She'll make you proud (er).

Marlene Austin

At 6/07/2009 7:54 PM, Blogger Marsha Ward said...

Or won't leave home, Marlene!


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