I often hear "just think, only 16 more years, then he'll finally be gone." "Only 10 more years. I can't wait."
Yes, those are their children(or grandchildren!!) that they are talking about. Does it make you sad to hear that? It sure does me! Are children really so horrible and inconvenient to people that they are counting down the days until they finally move out of the house? So they're noisy, they're crazy, they cause more messes than you can clean. They're also wonderful, snugly, exciting. It's a joy to watch them grow and learn and become strong, independent adults who go off to make their way in the world. But why the rush? Why the rush to force them out into the world. The more we rush them, the harder it will be for them to be strong and independent in the world.
I guess what I am trying to say is slow down! Take it easy. Enjoy them, no matter what. Whether they are 2 and destroying your house constantly, or they are a tween who is creating his/her own drama all day, they are still your babies. Treasure them. Enjoy them. No matter what they are doing. Or saying.
So give them hugs, extra snuggles, and enjoy them for who they are right now.