On Turning 17

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A teen driving a car.When your kid is 15 years old, they still need you. They are still not old enough to do many things on their own, and they still have that same face since they were six. You still need to drive them around, but they can have jobs and pay taxes.

A year later, it’s sweet 16 and another important milestone. Now you are teaching them how to drive so one day they can drive themselves, but you still have to be in the car for the most part. You are still needed.

Then your baby is 17, and they are looking for colleges, they got their driver’s license, and they take the car wherever and whenever they want. Suddenly it seems like they don’t need you anymore. When your child turns 17, you think you have one year left with them before they are adults. One year left when they are still children.

Don’t worry; you are still needed. Your child still needs your love and support more than ever. They will soon leave for college near or far, but they will have everything you taught them wherever they go. You can rest assured.

They will mess up, they will think they will ever recover, and they will pass some of life’s hardest tests with ease. And you have to let go and trust that they got the tools they need to succeed. You gave them those tools, and they will acquire even more over the years.

Your little bird is ready to fly and leave your nest. And that’s what it is all about. You raise them so they can be on their own. You teach them to be independent so they will not need you anymore.

Instead of feeling bad about them leaving, focus on yourself for a change. After all, you are also embarking on the next chapter of your life. They will be happy when you are happy and encouraging. Believe that they appreciate everything you have done for them, no matter how small you think it was.      

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Donia is a stay-at-home Egyptian archaeologist who majored in Egyptology. Egyptology had always been her passion since childhood. But family is her biggest passion. She lives in Mount Kisco with her husband Ayman, their daughters Dania (2005) and Mirette (2012), their cats Tiger and Drogo, and their German Shepherd Max. She is also a stepmom to two girls Nada (1991) and Malak (1995). When she is not busy taking care of her big family, she enjoys anything Sci-Fi and fantasy, watching cooking and baking competition shows, playing the drums, playing tennis with her husband, video games, and DIY projects. According to her girls, she particularly enjoys event and travel planning for her family and always goes all-out and prepares too much for an event. She is excited to join Westchester County Mom to share her experience as an expat and mom.

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