Is Every Mom of a Teen This Tired?

Is everyone this tired?

This stage of mothering big kids is where the rubber meets the road. It’s not as physically exhausting, but it is emotionally exhausting; coordinating carpools, driving to appointments, volunteering here, there and everywhere, helping sort tutors for AP classes, editing papers and college essays and drying tears from break-ups and not making sports teams.

I’m freakin spent!

We no longer have to help them with day-to-day tasks like tying their shoes, brushing their teeth, or reading bedtime stories. They help with some of household chores, but the laundry still resembles Mt. Everest and my desk is piled high with field trip consent forms, sports team schedules and monthly bills.

My kids need me now in a completely different way. They need me emotionally.

They need me to let them know that the C- on the chemistry test isn’t going to matter a year from now, and this whole high school thing will be a blip on their radar some day. They need me to reassure them when they go through a break-up that their world is not ending.

They need to talk to me or to respond to their text when they’re having a great day….or when they’re having a not so great day. They need me to hug them. They need me to make them chicken soup when they appear glassy-eyed and it seems almost certain they’ll be flat on their back in the next 24 hours.

I’ve begun to master the routines and choreography of parenting big kids and will always be their biggest cheerleader. I have more experience now, in parenting kids that are 6 inches taller than me. I do my best every day to make sure that even in the chaos of emotions of parenting big kids, I get out of bed, wash my face, pour myself a cup of coffee and greet them with a smile and a good morning, even if it’s met with a nod and a grunt.

I’m not perfect and I love that they see that. I forget to turn in forms at school. I forget to pack lunches. Just recently my son almost walked out the door with a pair of my underpants clinging to the back of his sweatpants from static cling because I probably forgot to put the dryer sheet in that load.

It takes a village.

Look at it this way, our kids are like unbaked cakes. And as they grow into teenagers, they’re still a little wiggly and the toothpick might not quite come out clean; but they’re almost ready for the sprinkles, with all the emotional exhaustion that goes with that stage day in and day out. You can only hope that you’re raising confident, competent young adults who will contribute to society in a positive way.

I can close my eyes every morning after my alarm goes off and wish for that fairy with a magic wand to appear….but would I? Then I’d miss out on those special moments with my kids that day.


Sure, I’m tired. I’ve got a few more wrinkles and dark circles under my eyes, but I wouldn’t change a thing.


This piece originally appeared at Grown and Flown, published with permission.

Amy Schmidt
Amy Schmidt
Amy Schmidt has been married for 25 years to her college sweetheart and has three big kids….ranging from 14-20 and they all tower over her. She’s convinced it’s something in the water. She left her professional career in journalism and PR to raise her children and has moved 11 times all over the country and the world. She took on the role of trailing spouse. She has written many articles over the years and enjoys her time as a freelance writer. Amy is also an independent business owner with a skin care company to empower confidence in women. She lives in the beautiful town of Ridgefield, CT and walks the tree-lined Main Street as often as possible. Find her on Facebook.

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