Ahh, the end of the school year…
It’s “that time of year” for many things, depending on the ages of our children: field days or proms, end-of-year parties or graduations, pool passes or job applications. And yearbooks. We didn’t do yearbooks in elementary school, but my children did. Then of course, they have middle and high school yearbooks.
So many yearbooks!
My husband and I recently—finally—unpacked some boxes and pulled out our old high school yearbooks. The kids laughed at the outdated designs of the covers before we even opened them. Then they laughed at the hairstyles, shoe choices, clothing, club names…just about everything. I’m not offended. Styles change, and one day, my grandchildren will laugh at my children’s yearbooks, too. (So there!)
They laughed, and I laughed with them for a minute. Then I began looking into my own eyes, staring back at me from those pictures. My yearbook reminded me of a few things I had forgotten in the thirty years since I was a teenager.
I was once awkward, too.
I once spent too long in front of the mirror, too.
I had braces. And glasses. And pimples. And all the worries that go along with them.
I had broken hearts and broken friendships.
I stressed out over a junior prom about which I can’t remember a single detail, even when I see myself in the yearbook photos. (Well, I remember that my date was a really nice guy.)
Have you looked through one of your old yearbooks recently? Have you taken hold of them and looked into your own eyes until you remember all the emotions and uncertainty of that age? That’s what your teenage kids are feeling right now.
When it comes to our children, we need to remember the other side of this verse.
When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. –1 Corinthians 13:11
It’s okay that our children talk, think, and reason like children. That’s what they are.
Yearbooks aren’t good for much, especially if, like me, you prefer to look forward rather than backward. But they helped me. You see, I had forgotten. I was expecting my teenagers to be entirely too reasonable, too rational, too efficient. I wasn’t reasonable, rational, or efficient at that age, and I came out okay.
I’m thinking my children will, too.
Have you looked through your high school yearbooks recently? Is there something else that helps you remember what it was like to be a teenager? I’d love to hear about it in the comments below!