on adolescence 11.12.13
Ah… adolescence! We all lived through it, yet, despite our own experiences and memories, we continue to be baffled by our own children’s antics, recriminations or even, on occasion, outright rebellion. We tell ourselves in calm times that we know what is churning away in our children’s minds, and that we will handle the next outburst, the next irrational and illogical demand, the next outcry. remarking upon our fundamental unfairness, with grace, self-possessed command and infinite patience.
When the time comes, more often that not, our buttons are pushed, our patience evaporates, and our hackles rise. (That really is the basic unfairness of it all – why can’t we stick with our carefully planned strategy? How is it that we are not equipped with just the right amount of immunity to the irritation inflicted by an epic eye roll?)
I have decided it is because we love our children so fiercely. If we didn’t, we would not feel the deep-seated hurt that accompanies our frustration, our exasperation – even our anger. We would not care when a disdainful shrug is the only response to our suggestion. We would smile when they tell us we are crazy, unfair, stifling, controlling, and yes- that we just don’t get it. We would calmly explain that it is our job to worry, guide and suggest. And our hackles would never rise.
It is our deep devotion to our children that motivates our emotional reactions. We worry about their well-being, and we desperately hope our own experiences will inform their decision-making. However, we know that our lives and their lives are separating (as they should) and we know that with that comes their need to make their own choices, uninformed though we deem them to be.
Raising children is not for the faint of heart. We love them throughout their turbulent years, no matter how many buttons they push. We, unwaveringly, see their ultimate potential to be happy, fulfilled adults- productive people who contribute positively to the world.
And sanity, ultimately, is restored. I can vouch for this. There will be a day that our children will express, in the sincerest of tones, how much we mean to them, how much they appreciate that all they have become is due to our unconditional love.
Until then, let’s gird our loins. We are going to need it.
Tuesday November, 12, 2013 at 10:01AM
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