Tween land sure was turbulent yesterday. It was a stormy weather pattern, and we had NO idea why. And no matter how hard we tried to change the current, we were swimming up-stream all day. As a protective Mamabear, I am often tempted to swoop in and try to rescue. I want to offer positive thoughts for creating her own sunshine and suggestions to turn it all around. I start pulling out stories of “when I was your age…”. But the truth is, she doesn’t see the relevance, and she’s convinced that I know zilch about being twelve. What she doesn’t know, is that I’m somewhat of an expert, really. Not only have I been twelve (and survived it, if even barely), but I can be transported back to that stage almost instantly when I pull up to the curb to drop her off at school, or when I take her to the mall with her friends. I revisit twelve every time I watch her wardrobe changes in the morning. Oh, I know twelve, little lady.
And last night, being twelve was tough when it was time to go to youth group and she made up her mind that she just didn’t want to go – “no one likes me”, she claimed. There were tears, there was a full-on confrontation, and at some point, there was an audible “I’m not going”. What she doesn’t know is that I love her enough to enforce what is best for her, and to push her outside of her comfort zone. I will love her from the sidelines, and I will give her the best tools I can to help her prepare for battle, but I refuse to rescue her unless it’s a matter of safety.
When my tween, force of nature was a baby in my belly, I read to her, and talked to her, and sang to her as often as I could. This was our song; my favorite song at the time:
When she was colicky and couldn’t be consoled, I would hold her close, and sing our song into her ear. It would slow her down enough to eventually fall asleep, if even for a minute. Then I could catch my breath, and build up patience for the next time she opened her eyes and was colicky again. She knows many stories of her days as the screaming banshee. What she doesn’t know is that I loved her with my whole being long before she took her first breath. She knows I would lay down my life to protect her, but what she doesn’t know is that I will ALWAYS love her enough to encourage her to “dance”, even when she hates me for it. I will continue to teach her to feel the fear, but do it anyway.
“Living might mean takin’ chances, but they’re worth takin’. Loving might be a mistake, but it’s worth making.”
Keep taking chances and making mistakes my sweet girl – that’s all part of the dance. ❤