I have been dealing with a somewhat snarky teen lately. I get that we were cut from the same cloth and share so many of the same personality traits that we can get on each other’s nerves. I know I am not alone. There are scores of parents with multiple teens and tweens dealing with the “I-know-it-all-and-mom-is-stupid” mentality of the adolescent mind.
It’s crazy how much we still love those kids, and what great lengths we go to make life easier for them. In my case, often I just choose not speak unless spoken to. You see if I ask a question that he had already answered two weeks ago then I am the fool for not having remembered which day he is going to Homecoming, or which classes he has on Wednesdays, right? Wrong! Still, until he has to juggle the responsibilities of career, bill paying, and the myriad of other grown-up stuff, he will just not understand that my main concern is not remembering every little facet of his life. I will often need to ask the same question again and again. Oh well.
When I grew tired of yelling at him and got bored with always trying to prove that my way is the only way, my relationship with him got tolerable. But better yet, the other day I found an old Women’s Daily Devotional and began flipping through it to see what my life was like 11 years ago. Oh, the entry I read was a sweet as it gets. The past gave me hope for the future.
6/10/2007 “After church this morning I came home and felt like doing nothing at all. Theo (not his real name) and I took pillows and a light blanket and stretched out on the swinging lounge chair in the backyard. For just over two hours we talked, dozed, talked a bit more and listened to the birds. We enjoyed the soft breeze and I felt renewed. I felt honored to have this alone time with my eight year old”
Wow. 19 is just a season in his life. I must be content to know that we were close once and will be close again. I gave him all of me and all that I am. It is enough. It is sufficient. He still loves me and all of my annoying questions and I still love him and his impatient personality. I was just like that at 19 when my parents wanted quality time with me. I was too busy with people my own age and my own agenda. I grew and he will too.
Go and love your irascible kid.