There is no manual for motherhood and each stage of our child’s life is often like walking through a carnival fun house full of crazy mirrors, and uneven floors. Just when you think you get your footing, you turn a corner and it all goes horribly wrong.
I knew this stage was coming. I have taught junior high long enough to know our happy home would not be immune to the trials and tribulations of the ‘brain fairy” years. You know, the years where the brain fairy replaces most of your child’s brain with hormones and attitude. She does this with a wicked smile all while she wishes you ‘good luck’
I have a pretty level headed daughter, but there are a number of things she is doing these days that are driving me absolutely crazy! I have a friend who once observed, “Teenage years make it all the easier to understand why some species eat their young!”
These days I can relate. So here is a letter I have written to my daughter who will soon be a teenager.
I love you, but there are some things you are doing these days that I just don’t like!
I love the fact that you are beginning to examine and question the world around you, but I don’t like the fact that you now question just about everything I say. How is it that overnight my opinion is no longer good enough and my every request must be met with an exaggerated roll of your eyes!
I love how you are taking a greater interest in your appearance, but I don’t appreciate how your nail polish, make up and hair products seem to ooze over the entire upper level of the house. Is it really so hard to clean up?
I love how your social group is expanding and I am really proud of the wonderful friends you have made. They are kind, polite and supportive of you. I don’t like how you spend more time texting them then you do talking to me. And while I’m on the topic of friends and texting, why are there so many boys texting you these days?!?!?
I love how responsible you are when you are out babysitting. Not only do you look after the children, but you also make simple meals and even clean up after them. Would it kill you to do the same at home? You spend more time arguing with your little sister then not. Add in the fact that your every journey to the kitchen results in food, dishes and cutlery spread on just about every surface.
After years of waking up early with you, I love the fact that you are finally sleeping in. But let it be known that anything past noon is taking things to an extreme! Not only do you need to get up, but lazing around all weekend, in your PJ’s, is just not acceptable. Yes I know you THINK you work hard all week and deserve a break, but if I don’t get a break on the weekend, neither do you!
I love how your unique and quirky sense of humour is developing, but please know my level of humour is just a bit more refined than yours and I just don’t find the countless Youtube videos you find hilarious very funny. Please stop torturing me with bad singing, moronic lyrics and rude jokes!
I love that you are beginning to think about your future as you make decisions about your education and career choices. Please know that I am thinking about your future too when I ask you to learn important life skills such as cooking meals, cleaning a toilet, vacuuming and doing laundry. Trust me, despite the fact that right now you think I am punishing you, one day you will thank me.
My dearest daughter, your ever increasing brain fairy behaviour may drive me to distraction some days, but above all else, please remember how very much I love you. I will love you no matter what – even when you roll your eyes at me!