Parenting is hard. Kids don't come with a manual. You do the best you can to try and make them good humans. But, every child is different and unique. Each offers a new set of challenges and wonders to your life.

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But, the hardest part of parenting wasn't when they were newborns and not sleeping, or leaving toys and sticky fingerprints everywhere. The hardest part of parenting was when they grew up. It's when they got out on their own without me being there to protect them from danger.

Along with not being able to protect them from physical or emotional pain, the thing that hurts the most when your kids are grown up, is them moving away. They have moved out of town or to another state, or they have moved down the road. Either way, I don't get to see them every day and it rips my heart out.

Now, since my kids are all grown, I cherish every moment I have with them. It's never enough time, though. I miss them so much. I cry, driving home, every time I leave them.

Don't get me wrong, I raised them to leave me and live their dream life. Whatever that is and wherever it it. I only want them to be happy and make the most of the life they have been given,

But, after spending every waking moment with them, I miss them all the time. I'm not one to wish I could go back in time and do things over, but I would like to go back a relive my days with my kids when they were young.

They always ask me what I want for Christmas and I tell them I want them, together, or separately to come for a long visit. I ask them to call and text me. Send me photos of what's going on in their lives. Basically, all I want for Christmas s them in any form I can get. Even if it's just FaceTime.

I came across this touching letter on Facebook. Written by former Olympic swimmer and mother of three, Lisa Curry, it gives us insight into the only thing she wants from her children for Christmas. This letter hit me hard. She gets it. She wants exactly what I want for Christmas.

My daughter each year asks me the same question. After thinking about it, I have decided I’d give her my real answer:

What do I want for Christmas? I want you. I want you to keep coming around, I want you to bring your kids around (when you have them).

I want you to ask me questions, ask my advice, tell me your problems, ask for my opinion, and ask for my help. I want you to come over and rant about your problems, rant about life, whatever. Tell me about your job, your worries, your significant others/spouses, and your kids when you have them. I want you to continue sharing your life with me.

Come over and laugh with me, or laugh at me, I don’t care. Y’all laugh at me all the time and I secretly love it. Hearing you laugh is music to me.

I spent the better part of my life raising you the best way I knew how, and I’m not bragging, but I did a pretty darn good job.

Now, give me time to sit back and admire my work, I’m pretty proud of it. Raid my refrigerator, help yourself, I really don’t mind. In fact, I wouldn’t want it any other way. I want you to spend your money making a better life for you and your families when you have them because I have the things I need. I want to see you happy and healthy.

When you ask me what I want for Christmas, I say “nothing” because you’ve already been giving me my gift all year. I want you. - Lisa Curry

So, adult kids, give your mom what she really wants, it's what your dad wants, too. Give them YOU. Make time to share your life with them. Let them over you and your growing family. Once, you were their everything, and even as an adult, you still are one of the most important things in their life.

Whenever you can, give them YOU. Whether it's a phone call, text, or visit. Give them YOU. As much as you can. Not just during the holidays, but all year long.

[Heatlthy Mummy]

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