The worst part about having teenagers isn’t the unpredictable moods (mainly my own), its the damaged self-esteem having become the shortest member of my household.
I hate being the shortest.
However, this was what I prepared for, this moment in time when I could no longer intimidate them by being bigger. I did all I could to earn their respect. I carved rules into stone and quashed revolt to the best of my ability. It’s all led to this…I genuinely enjoy them as humans.
This has pushed me into a new precipice of parenting. While I am still a quiet, constant support in their lives, what they do with them is no longer up to me. I will serve them best if I keep my opinions to myself. I’ve had my shot at being a teenager. I gave it my all and it’s not up to my boys to fulfill any of my unlived dreams. And, anyway, I feel like I’m just getting started.
I plan to appreciate wherever my one, wild, and precious life takes me.
The point of all this, and yes, there is actually a point, is that I want to declare that my boys are in charge of their destiny from here on out.
I want Full Speed to choose his college (if college suits him) and career path based on his own criteria.
From what I can see, he is thoughtful in his musings about his future. I trust him and I trust life to take him wherever he needs to go. As long as he is following his curiosity, the answers will come.
As for T. Puzzle, who at this stage remains committed to verbalizing the least amount of words possible on any given day, I support this endeavor. Who I am I to know what he needs? Maybe my penchant for feeling-based talks aren’t the answer to everyone’s problems. What works for me may not work for him. I did recently ask him to at least alter the inflection when he says “good” or “ok” just to give me some auditory variance. If he decides not to, that’s fine by me, too.
The greatest superpower a parent has is their ability to witness the incredible, pure essence of what makes each of their children awesome. This will help see you through the conflict particular to raising teenagers.
And remember, the best way to get them to listen to you is to say as little as possible.
I think T. Puzzle is really on to something there.