Tweenin ain’t easy ya’ll. Often times raising a girl feels a lot like swimming in the ocean … with giant waves. One minute you are floating along peacefully, the next you feel like you are drowning in a fury of hormones, emotions, and constant changing moods. Right when I think I have this mom thing figured out, CRASH, I’m spiraling under grasping for air. What just happened? Giiiirrrllll you betta not be talkin to your mama like that! Why are you crying? Did I miss something?! Oh, You think I’m the best mom ever?! Do you, really? Ok, tell me what you want? NO Means NO! Sweet Jesus, it’s like living with a really cute cuddly porky pine.
And I pray, Lord almighty I pray, that I’m raising her right. That I’m teaching her all the important lessons like how kissing is a gateway drug, and kissing leads to pregnancy. Or how harmful and hurtful our words can be. Or how phone addiction is a thing and if I ever see it out at the dinner table I will throw it on the ground and smash it with a hammer. Sometimes I wonder if I’m hurting rather than helping.
Is my allowing her to miss school for family time against all good mom code or is it instead instilling in her a family first mentality? Is my refusal to save her from failing a project if she waits until last minute to start it, being too hard on her? Is my openness about teenage pregnancy and how easy it is to fall for societal pressure too soon? Too much? What about my constant reminder that if you do drugs, you will die, and if the drugs don’t kill you I will. Or my goal for her this school year had zero to do with academics and everything to do with her making sure no classmate sat alone at lunch, or in class.
More often than not, these days, she reminds me that she doesn’t need me holding her hand as much anymore, that she’s becoming her own self, a strong girl with morals, and goals, and values of her own. That her heart is so big, that I don’t need to tell her to search out the lost and lonely because she already does. She proved that the day she came home from school and said she searched the entire lunchroom but couldn’t find anyone sitting alone, so she made sure to ask the shy girl to be her partner in class. I saw it the day I took her to tour the junior high school— I stepped back (because god forbid anyone sees her with her mom) and I witnessed kid after kid come say hi, and I watched her return everyone’s greeting with the warmest most sincere smile, no matter who they were. And I was reminded how pure and innocent she is when she came home last week asking/begging me to go to a church function with all her girlfriends. And I experienced firsthand how caring she is when I was sick this past weekend and she kissed my forehead and forced me to drink water, or when she sends me morning text messages just to say “I love you.”
Whether we are floating, jumping the waves, or being knocked down by the swells — I love every minute of being her mom.
Tonight, we went to dinner just the two of us, and we were silly, and sarcastic, and we giggled over what flan is, and we joked about stealing each others clothes, and we discussed crushes and quizzes, and we laughed hysterically talking about how traumatizing it is to go bra shopping with me—and my heart swelled with joy for moments like this, that feel a whole lot like walking on waves.
I love you munchkin, more than oreos ❤️