Monday, December 6, 2010

My Outward Bound Quote of the Day....

"The thing I hate about an argument is that it always interrupts a discussion."

And that's my life with teens. We begin discussing a subject. Maybe school, social event, computer, day trips or any random thing...and life is good. It might go on for quite a few minutes. Or not.

If T.J. and Grace are involved during the same discussion with Biff and I, somehow one comments or critiques (read criticizes, Hrumpffs at the other's comment or downright is rude about the comment that the other is making. It could be about the school bus timing in the morning, the state of affairs in their lives or choosing soup for lunch.

One always has a comment. Just one comment can crash a lovely discussion. Life is funny. Teenagers see the world through their own eyes, how things affect them.The economy and business is about them...Dad, do you think if you get more business we could get our own laptops. So and so has his own laptop. Are we poor?

O.K. that's when the light bulb in my head instantaneous response might be something like this, "Are you kidding? Do you know how lucky you are to have a dad that loves his job, works so hard to take care of our you know how lucky you are when there are families ......."

BUT I bite my tongue...hopefully in time....before I sound like the old,"  You finish that dinner....there are people in ______________(country of choice, country in most recently in the news) starving to death! 

 Do you realize how lucky you are to have food on your plate.....?"

Thankfully right then and there, if I'm lucky, I realize that they are teenagers and their frontal lobe part of their brain is not fully formed and has more to fill in before I begin accusing them of being self absorbed and blah, blah, blah. THANKFULLY! Because in the moment that something, anything big in life, totally turns into ....But how does that affect me? 

I think we all do a bit of that and THEN empathy or sympathy or some other feeling kicks in. That must be the frontal lobe kicking in! I have to give that frontal lobe in the forefront(no pun intended) of my own brain so that I can stop, think and speak. Now, that I've learned about that frontal lobe, I can attribute most of the teen troubles to that.  Talking back....they can barely edit themselves....they blurt. Maybe, if we're all lucky they realize what they've said.  Sometimes, our sweet loving children hear our words and don't listen or they hear our words and totally think we are saying something else. I sometimes think that when I speak, my words change as they cross some sort of teenage sound barrier....or in some cases the big bang theory!

Please understand, I am talking about our children....who we love deeply and with all of our hearts.....we know that deep down to their core, these are very loving children with only goodness and light. EXCEPT for that frontal lobe.....that's where all of our confusion and misunderstandings and misinterpretations and mishaps and upset and drama start to roll.....and fast.

In an instant, a girl in our house can be singing her heart out, happy as Liza Minnelli belting out New York, New York.....and then, I ask that same happy, song-filled soul to empty the dishwasher.....and life turns upside down. If I don't stop to remember that this sweet girl has no fully developed frontal lobe.......because of the way I might word my's a great possibility that my lovely Grace will get hysterical.....because I have offended her in some way or have suggested by my tone that she is not responsible, smart, caring or kind. Huh? I think I just reminded her to empty the dishwasher?

In an instant, a girl in our house can be singing her heart out, happy as Liza Minnelli belting out NewYork, New York.....and then, I ask that same happy, song-filled soul to empty the dishwasher.....and life turns upside down. If I don't stop to remember that this sweet girl has no fully developed frontal lobe.......because of the way I might word my's a great possibility that my lovely Grace will get hysterical.....because I have offended her in some way or have suggested by my tone that she is not responsible, smart, caring or kind. Huh? I think I just reminded her to empty the dishwasher? 

I can have a discussion with T.J. about his teacher and his homework....ask when his project is due and how much of the work has been completed, just for the sake of time management....not a priority for our 14 year old.....and before the conversation has gone beyond the name of the teacher or the due date and my son truly believes that I have suggested that he is lazy or less than an intelligent student. 

Even yesterday , that poor undeveloped frontal lobe seemed to translate my words, in another language, by the time our sweet boy heard my words....I asked if his teacher had commented on his paper that had been returned. His frontal lobe concocted a whole 'nother story! He said, "Mom, you sound like you're calling me an idiot."....that is really what that boy, my flesh and blood heard me say.  

And so, when I hear my children say something less than genius or less than charming....I know it's that silly frontal lobe talking. The fact is that I really love our children and I love who they are as people. I do have to give them grow into themselves and their frontal lobes.

Maybe in a few years or five, when we have a discussion they will be able to push through that lobe thingy and understand my words. It's pretty tricky growing up these teens! Oh boy....I'm so grateful that I love them! I'm also grateful that I like them. When I don''s just 'cuz of that darn lobe....we're waiting....patiently for our kids to grow into kids that can continue a discussion about walking the dogs without an argument! 

As soon as I write this....I! we have good kids. If someone reads this who doesn't know how wonderful they are......yet, they are teens so if they have any exposure to teens....they will know? They may even be nodding their heads as they read my words.They will know that this is an honest mother telling the account of days with teens. Will they no how much I love these kids. Nope.

I didn't even remember how I have flashbacks sometimes.....of me, at 14 and at 15.....hmmmmm. I hate to admit this...but I was less than delightful during those years! Did I ever mention that my mom had white hair? Coincidence?  In the moment of the argument/interruption/conversation.....I bite my tongue and remember that we are still growing these sensitive, self conscious, insecure, awkward, uncomfortable teens into fine human may take awhile.

I finally got my photo from satuday nightuploaded. Very COLD night at the big playoff!

Facebook Fun



My status late this afternoon.....

Today Fitzy gulped down a chunk of the gingerbread lighthouse.


      Had you mad the lighthouse yet? or was it sitting waiting to be assembled?

      Oh no! Caroline just finished that yesterday! Reminds me of when Riley a whole batch of chocolate crinkle cookies that were cooling on a table. Grrrrrrrrr....

      Biff's mom brought it on Thanksgiving...L.L.Bean...awesome!
      Fitz is at it again huh? LOL, don't mean to laff but it is pretty funny
      so do you have to walk him later? ummmmm another reason I am glad to not have a dog, early morning walks & clean ups~ lol lol
      sticking with the kitties i just have to hide my yarn!

      lighthouse was cute
      Hey! Caroline's kitty, Boo, would be a thief too...he always gets cozy when I'm having coffee or breakfast...kitty beast ...he's the kitten version of Fitz! His name at the rescue was "Thomas"...for what it's worth! ( brother's name)

      Yes, I stick with my kitties, very independent they are and the she cats put the TOM cat in his place,,,,, lol lol

      hahahahaha "Thomas" hahahah
      Always a party!


OpenID littlemarymixup said...
A new life is a miracle. Everyday for you as a mom ...,living consciously, being present, using positive language, love, hugs, honesty, trusting your own instincts with the baby/child that you will know better than anyone, trusting in a higher power....your baby is blessed. You and your husband have been blessed. Love, love and more love and loving words to teach him throughout his life will make him a strong spirit...forever changing your life for the better! We learn all of the lessons we need through our children. This is a wild adventure. Love him.
I happened upon a blog of a woman hoping, waiting, wishing, dreaming and working full time on exploring possibilities of having a baby. She and her husband had been through all kinds of infertility work and had explored every option available to have their very own baby. Finally, after working on options, they decided to be open to adoption and had many disappointments until one day, a phone call changed their lives. Unprepared for this surprise gift, the couple realized this was the right situation and the birth mother did not change her mind.  They fell in love. She wrote of her insecurities as a new mom. She wrote of her mom's style mothering. She wrote of all the dreams she had for her baby. She wrote of her heartfelt feelings and beliefs she had as a new mom. She was sure that she could do it right. She would do everything in the world for this baby. She would give everything she had to this baby. She was ready and committed to love. She made promises to this baby boy that was now family. It was beautiful. The words. The dreams. The wishes. The hopes. As a new mom, it is awesome to have a new life,  new creation, a miracle,  sweet and pure to put every bit of energy we have into this being. Everyday is an opportunity to make our kids the best they can be, teaching them what us. We all begin with that fresh slate and think we can do it "right"...whatever our right is. These hopes we have for our baby may begin when we see our family and friends' babies. We all have those thoughts....."my baby will NEVER WATCH T.V."....."my child won't talk like that "......"I'm not ever going to raise my voice"....."I will never bribe my child".....blah.blah.blah. And meet your own baby. Then you realize your sweet baby grow. Babies have personalities. Moms and dads have personalities. Babies get cranky. Moms and dads get cranky. Babies are just being who they are. Moms and dads are too. Babies have good days and bad days. Moms and dads have good days and bad days. On and on. I had those same dreams, hopes and wishes. Biff and I were sure we knew how to do it "right" and make our kids the best possible people they could be. We have done our best. Everyday we have a fresh start and we have started new every single day.....doing our best despite the kinks that life have come up along the way. We have always done our best. Life enters into the mix. Teachers. Neighbors. Sports. Dance. Kids. Families. Kids' friends. 
Life happens as we go on. We have all of the best dreams. We have the best kids we can have. We love them. We are there for them. We do everything we can to teach and teach more. We are preparing them for the big world out there. We can't save them from everyone and everything that will hurt them....that's the reality.  We can't save them from from themselves. We can only be there and be our best....for them. 
We have the greatest job in the world. It's the best job I've ever had....with the most insecurities. Just because we have our plans and dreams, we have to realize that not every plan and dream fits the child. Not every plan and dream makes sense for that child. We realize that the world enters the picture and mixes with our child's personality,energy and their dreams. We have to do our best and let go in some situations.
Our sweet innocent and pure babies grow. They learn to walk. We have to let them fall and learn to get up. That is the hardest balance for this mom. How far to let them go....before we stop. We do our best to give them an appropriate amount of independence. We have to let learn. That is the hardest part. To give them the chance to grow we have to let go. Letting go is the hardest part.