"So, we're best friends, right?" I say to my seven-year-old as she tries to wrangle a little blue rubber dress on her Polly Pocket doll.
"Un hunh," she says as she concentrates fiercely on the task at hand.
"What about when you're, lets say, 15? How about then?" I ask eagerly.
"Sure," she says refusing to look up from her doll.
"But will you still want to hang out with me all of the time?"
There is a long silence. She finally looks up from her half-dressed doll and meets my gaze.
"Mommy, I don't know how I'll feel then. I can't make any promises," she says reaching out and putting her hand on my shoulder, clearly trying to soften the blow to my delicate mother-ego.
So, is that how it's going to be? One minute, they are clamoring for every little drop of attention you will bestow upon them. The next minute their done with you, leaving you home alone, in the dust as soon as something more exciting comes along like the teenage years.
"But we'll still be best friends? Right? You're just not sure you will want to hang out with me?" I can tell my voice sounds desperate. I'm trying to act cool, but it's not working very well.
"Right. We'll always be best friends, but I might have other things I want to do when I'm 15n," she says sincerely.
I guess I better get in a lot of face-time with her now. In a couple of years it will just be her looking at the back of my head as I drive her around town to be with her friends...
Amanda is the mom of two, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including one on motherhood called "Smotherhood."