Thursday, May 28, 2009

I just have a quick sec...

before I run up to read "Mr. Popper's Penguins" with Emma and put her to bed. (That's a fantastic book, btw, so if you haven't read it, you definitely need to!)

You know, when you have babies and toddlers, people always tell you, "Wait till they're teenagers." They'll run wild, drive us insane, make us wonder why we had children in the first place.

And, of course, there's all the angst. And the drama. As parents, we prepare ourselves for the manic ups and downs of the hormonal teen years.

What I failed to prepare myself for over the past 11 1/2 years was the angst that I would feel. I never gave it much thought that her problems would tear me up more than they do her. That her grades would make me want to tie her down and force her to actually study for the damn science test! That her friendship dramas would make me want to cry and pull her to me and protect her with my mama bear claws.

I need to distance myself a little, I know. I just don't know how. I don't know how to let her problems be her problems, not my own. How can a parent do that? How can a parent say, "Enough, already." I need to teach her to be self-sufficient and responsible, to give her advice, support and hugs at her whim, not my own.

But it's so hard! (Insert large, teenager sounding whine here. LOL)

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