My Kid at 18
My eldest child turned 18 recently. It’s such a strange line, an arbitrary line, a legal line, between childhood and adulthood. Things change and things stay the same.
We held a party for our newly proclaimed adult, and of course my parents were part of it. My mom brought a present — for ME.
Me at 18
It was a poem I’d written on my own 18th birthday decades ago. Mom had framed and adorned it with a miniature version of my senior portrait.
It’s not the world’s best poetry (or prose, perhaps; not sure which I was going for), but it does give renewed insight into what it is like to be in the newborn days of being an adult.
I Am Myself
I am myself
I can be no one else
No one has to put up with me
As time passes
People come and go
My friends and family aren’t always near
It’s important that
I can live with myself
I seek approval from no one
It would be nice
To have everybody like me
But that is just a dream held
So as I go through
Life’s ups and downs
I must always do what’s right
Because I am the only who who is
— Lori Holden, freshman in college
What do you remember being the most challenging part of turning 18?
Lori Holden, mom of a teen son and a young adult daughter, writes from Denver. Her book, The Open-Hearted Way to Open Adoption: Helping Your Child Grow Up Whole, is available through your favorite online bookseller and makes a thoughtful anytime gift for the adoptive families in your life. Catch episodes of Adoption: The Long View wherever you get your podcasts.
Lori was honored as an Angel in Adoption® in 2018 by the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.