Picture yourself at your child's age, try to remember how you felt.
I can see myself as an 11, almost 12 year old. At this time I was obsessed with being a dancer and spent all of my time doing so. I was in 6th grade, my last year in elementary school. I got into my first fight and had my first french kiss :)
I was in that awkward spot between becoming a teen and still feeling like a kid. I was more mature than the other kids, I already had boobs! I remember feeling insecure about my looks. I remember feeling like I didn't know where I belonged. I fell in love 3 times that year. I found out what the word "slut" meant. I changed best friends a few times.
My baby brother was born when I was 11. I remember he was born early and very sick. Seeing him now, you would never know that. He is 15 and taller than me.
I remember trying to separate myself from my parents at this time. I became more involved with friends and less involved with family. I need to keep this in mind now that my son is this age. This is a crucial time for development and gaining confidence in yourself. This is a time when the importance of family needs to be stressed, and the importance of positive friends should be emphasized. This is a time when your child's self-esteem should be built up everyday, because unfortunately there will be kids who try to break it down.
I want to freeze my son at this age forever.
Here's a picture of me when I was about 11:
And a side by side photo: