From the stable of the parent of a teen
“You know, when you saw me late last night on the laptop, I was chatting with John (fictitious name)” said my soon-to-be fourteen-year-old.
She was just about nine weeks in her new school, and I was barely coming off the fevers that take over the body of a mother who is two days into weaning her baby- tough one. In her case, I’d been with her in the same school environment for thirteen whole years of our lives.
Thoughts of how she’d cope without family around like it used to be, what new friends she’d be making, new behaviours she’d be taking on, who she’d run to when she felt uncomfortable, how she’d manage the emotions that at times could be overwhelming for a teen. I was worried!
Then this? A boy? The reason you stayed up late? How?!!! When?!!! What was I doing while time was going by? My baby was beginning to get the attention of a boy?!!!
“Mumy, I said I was chatting with John. He’s in my class. He’s quiet…” She said excitedly!
“She even likes this boy,” I thought.
“Mumy….” Then I cut her short. “I heard what you said about John. You both were chatting last night after your bedtime and on the laptop. He is in your class, and he’s quiet. I mirrored while taking some time to think each word thoroughly through.
Though this mother is a highly intentional parent, like every other human mother, she experiences emotions and feels them in her body. For this reason, while at mirroring what she had heard her teen say, she took some time to take deep breaths while staying connected to mother earth with her bare feet on the floor.
Tossing the pillow to the other end of the bed I continued, “… and is that good enough reason to stay up past your bedtime? I’m wondering what your plan for ‘when sleep hits in class’ is. Anyway you go get set. We can discuss this later”.
I had succeeded in making the topic less important. This was most certainly going to make ‘teen girl’ spill more gist later in the evening.
She very well did continue with more details.
“You will return the pringles and say, ‘Thank you, but I can’t have it”. Teen was amazed, “You mean I should return a gift? That would be unkind, mumy”.
“So from pringles, a next is an earring, then a bangle, then a hair band, and then it continues till you’re called up by the school management to defend how you were an accomplice in taking monies away from John’s parent’s wallet, and you’d say? By the way, does he earn? And how much?”
That sealed the deal. “Mumy, I will return it to him”. Oh! It very well didn’t end at that, because teen girl would come home with many more stories each day.
There was this one of how she was getting really scared that a human being could mutilate another in the fashion John did. I could see the fear in her eyes while she narrated every detail of the story.
The beginning of many more stories of my teen and I!