I have been the mom of big kids for quite a while now. It is not the same as being a mom to younger children. It is an amazing time, but it is very different. There are a few things that I have learned so far and have been pondering...
Be a cheerleader! The bigger my kids got, the more I saw a need for a lot of positive reinforcement and less correcting. This is a hard one for me to work on. When I see things that need work, I want to address them, but have found it better to bite my tongue a lot more. (At times to the point of it bleeding!) It is also very difficult because the bigger the kids, the bigger the problems can be, but I want to be that Mom that my kids know is in their corner and believes in them. The training has been done (well, most of it;-) and now it is time for them to use what they have learned.
Put your hands on them! Especially when my kids started getting into their teenage years, they would not always want me to touch them anymore. I did not let that stop me. I continued to love on them, hug them, and touch them when I was talking with them. I am convinced this continues to show love to them. Even now, when I put my arm around my 20 year-old Cheney during church, he doesn't get upset with me. I think he still sees it as love. (Maybe inside he doesn't;-)
Be Dear Abby! Although I try not to address every issue I see in my children's lives, I try to be available for those times when they want advice or to talk something through. I try to make that a priority, even over the other important things in my day. Just yesterday, my biggest girl called me and I was in a store. I usually hate to answer the phone when I am in a store, but I just slid into an aisle where there weren't other people and we had a great conversation about a big decision she was making. I try to be better about listening and helping them sort things out.
I still have so much to figure out, but I am thankful for this time of life...a time when I look forward to being with them, talking with them and enjoying their company.