Thursday, October 1, 2009

The Sordid Truth

So here it is... the truth. I have been avoiding you. All of you. And I guess what I am hoping is you will maybe understand. If not, well then so be it. Please be patient and know that any irritation in my 'voice' is not, I repeat, not directed at you. But since it is illegal to throttle my children and abandon them on the street, I must take my frustrations out on the innocent... you.

Now, why have I been ignoring all the wonderful, optimistic, conscientious, inspiring tales of raising the next generation? Because suddenly I see the futility of it all. The societal judgment lingering in the air, for nothing, has gotten the better of me. The angst over breast or bottle, TV or no TV, green or... well, apparently there is no other choice besides green, or our kids, and the world as we know it, will all just instantly go to Hell.

I guess it seems harsh and, well, rude, to say it just doesn't matter if you do or do not grow your own squash to then boil (But not too long or all the nutrients will evaporate and your children will get rickets. Or is it scurvy?), and then mash, and then strain, and then mash again, and then feed to your children as they listen to Vivaldi's Four Seasons.

And do you know how I know it doesn't matter? Because I've done it. And you know what? My kids still talk back to me. They forget their homework at school. They complain about taking the trash out every single time, even though they have been taking out the trash twice weekly for the last 4 years. They fail tests. They go out with friends, in actual moving vehicles, and don't answer their cell phone for hours at a time. Yes, it happens.

The pressure on teens today is insane, and even in the most laid back of households, they feel it. Kids are depressed, kids feel lonely and isolated, and it has very, very little to do with whether or not they learned the alphabet in Chinese as a toddler. They react to things with little regard to the 'tools' they learned during circle time in kindergarten. Hormones are raging, chemicals in the brain are on the loose, disaster looms around every corner. Yes, it happens.

Or maybe at this point, you are thinking, "Well, it won't happen in my house." And maybe it won't. But it probably will. And, like me, you will be ill prepared for the constant frustration and emotional wrangling.

But, at least I know that when the day comes and my boys are standing in front of a judge, awaiting their sentence, they will remember to say "Yes Ma'am". And the nutrition they banked as infants will sustain them through years of prison food.

33 comments:

Ronnie "Sickboy" Sharpe said...

That last line is classic! Two things, I sound A LOT like your children and I think I turned out alright :) And second, Mandi and I were actually talking about this the other day, with some kids it just doesn't matter what kind of parent you are; they're gonna do what they're gonna do. Countdown to 18!!!!


Stay Strong Mama,
Ronnie

Susan Berlien (warmchocmilk) said...

I've missed you. I know. I totally get it. I've tried so hard thus far and already some days I feel like I've failed with my 5 year old. Everyones elses kids seems to "LOVE" kindergarten. I feel like I've failed myself and failed him. Where did I go wrong. We read bedtimes stories every night and sometimes during the day, I tried to make practicing letter and numbers and writing his name fun. Oh and the whole green and clean issue I try but....I fail at that too.

Evolving Mommy Catherine said...

Isn't that the teens years in a nutshell? Currently the toddler years are testing me and I am only a few months in. It's true though (with anything related to your kids) you're damned if you do and you're damned if you don't.

♥georgie♥ said...

will it make you feel any better if I tell you that all 3 of mine hate me right now-that even tho i birthed them and gained 79million LBS during pregnancy they still think they are adopted...ET phone home ;-)
Hugs Deb!

Kristina P. said...

I work with punk ass teenagers everyday. And yes, kids are cute when they are little, and then they grow up.

And I will meet with parents in my office, who think that they are horrible parents. I always tell them that any parent, no matter how awesome they are, can have kids that struggle and go off the path.

Now, if all your kids are prostitutes and drug dealers? It's you.

Jenn@ The Crazies said...

Oh darlin... Sounds like you have your hands full... I only have one teenager at this point and she is awesome though I know she is doing things I would prefer she not do... I will hang int here with ya!

Sweet Annabelle said...

I'm so with you on this. Hope my co-miseration can reach you from here! (if that's not a word, you get my meaning, right?)

s

Mariah said...

I missed you!!! I am sorry you feel like strangling your kids. I've worked with teens for awhile and I can tell you even the good parents can have crappy kids. BUT, I have seen them come around and become amazing people. Hopefully it's "just a phase" but if not, maybe you can get a stun gun:)

Mariah

CaJoh said...

I was just wondering if you were still around. So glad that it is something simple like Kids that keeps you at bay and not something more serious.

I hate to use the phrase "this too will pass"… but this is one of those situations where they have to learn from their mistakes. Sure it is frustrating, but so is everything else… if you let it.

You are one of those people that I see can look at things in a different light and make light of those things in the process. That is why I gravitate towards those "Dirty Socks" because I know that there will be "Pizza" in the end— and how I LOVE Pizza!!!

Good luck with it!

Em said...

My %^$# Netbook shut down before I could post my comment earlier - let's see if I can remember...

I love you. Your shrine will be complete by the end of the week.

Thanks for keeping it real. And I can guarantee it WILL happen in this house. Something I get to look forward to when I hit my Golden Years.

Under the Influence said...

With one 12 yr. old (and a 9 and almost 6 yr. old) BOYS, I am already starting to understand your misery, especially with the 12 yr. old.

Quirkyloon said...

Oh Deb, I've missed you!

Loved this post and it is sooooo true!

Vegan baby food is not going to guarantee a perfect child.

But wait...what's this about hormones raging?

Something for me to look forward to with my 12-year-old?

I'm so ready for the Zombie Apocalypse.

I say BRING. IT. ON!

hee hee

Michele Renee said...

Hi, found you from Em's blog. I have two middle schoolers. I have never been so worn out in my life. Luckily my husband was one of 6 kids , 4 of them boys and he keeps me real by knowing that no matter what we do, there are going to be issues and F-ups. There already have been.

Beth said...

Good grief, I've missed you, woman! Personally, I think God designed my teenagers to be so annoying that I'd be ready to ship them off to college (don't let the door hit you in the ...). Why does it have to be so hard? And to think I thought the two's were challenging.

angie said...

A good dose of reality never hurt anyone......that's why I don't ever want my kids to grow up. The end. :)

deb said...

Oh I know this . I hate it and love it and pray that I won't scar them {mentally :) ) , as I have been, and someday I'll have a memory that only plays the good stuff channel, and they all have lots of kids so they get it . Oh wait, then they'll want me to babysit .
Honestly, I think sometimes they just need a safe place , and we are it. I am still trying to figure out what counts as disrespect , and trying to pick my battles.

Tony@ That One Paticular Harbor said...

You have not missed a step girl. Keeping it real as usual. Kids are damn hard no matter what age. Period. I just read today about how kids who eat to much candy have a 40% chance of being arrested for a violent act before they turn 34? What teh F? So I called my wife from the road and told her to purge teh goodie basket. I do not need a serial killer by 29. Life is not always easy and a vacation , but you are a wonderful mom and do not doubt it for a minute. I will take the boys for a week and tehy will come home acting like military brats. But that is how i was raised and they may not enjoy that week. I miss you. Keep your chin up, you have friends. Drink heavily when needed every 4-t6 hrs. LOL Peace

Wendyburd1 said...

Deb you are too funny!

I do not think the fact that my parents made my baby food, well mashed nanas anyway, affects how I grew up. I don't think the fact that they couldn't afford whatever equated to Baby Einstein back then, affected me. My parents loved me, and that is why I ended up being someone who respects elders, etc.

Although the fact that I didn't listen to Beethoven and what not might make me end up a serial killer, because you HAVE to listen to classical music to be a good kid. *rolling eyes*

Sera said...

Can I just say I agree wholeheartedly with Angie on this one? This was a great post, and that last part was just the best. You've been missed big time! This is the stuff that I know is going to be my reality in the years ahead - I just won't let myself think about it. I get depressed just thinking about putting Kaylee in preschool.

ComfyMom~Stacey said...

I think I need to work harder on the "Yes Ma'am" part because I am not at all certain mine will manage more than a sullen "yeah, whatever" at sentencing.

Kim said...

You are so perfect Deb. Thank you for the words of inspiration. I will be glad to know that the extended breastfeeding will help ward my children of illnesses they might encounter in prison someday ;)

Harlene said...

Oh, darling, been there done that have the grey hair to prove it! Still doing it! You be thelma and I'll be louise, oh wait, we LOVE them, so we cant leave!

Between my 4 boys and my newly teen daughter, I get it, I really get it!

But, remember my dingus, the one who got arrested with the bubble bath? The same one who had to get a GED, because he couldn't keep track of his homework the whole 12 years of school? He is the same one who was awarded Soldier of the Cycle last May, and recently was awarded another Strength, Toughness, Ready around the Clock award in addition to graduating his Intelligience training with a 3.95! More importantly, his Commanding Officer made a point to introduce himself to me and tell me what a fine Man I had raised! Go figure? It really does all add up!!!!

♥georgie♥ said...

hey deb just stopping back in with a SSS update:
we sent out the first round of q&a's if you did not receive an email from us please click the link below and follow the instructions
Thanks and we are so excited you are joing the SSS
http://georgienba.blogspot.com/2009/10/secret-santa-soiree-official-411.html

Heather of the EO said...

I think about this all the time. Even though I'm far from the teen years that will be here in a second.

I'm terrified and I don't think it's possible to get prepared.

Maybe that's why I don't kill myself with trying to be perfect now. It might seem like I do, but if you lived here you'd see the lack of perfection all.over.the.place. :)

I prefer the whole go with the flow mentality with most things. I just want them to know I'm crazy about them, that's the part I worry over.

Everything else...it's just stuff.

Tiaras said...

holly hell girl - pissed off you are!

what the heck did those little boys of yorus do?

mama-face said...

I, too, have missed your dirty socks and pizza.

I haven't read all of your comments, so I don't know how much I will say is a repeat; but here are my thoughts...

I was a rotten, pain in the butt teenager. I hated my parents. I was too selfish to have any idea how they were feeling. I grew up into a law abiding, respectful, non substance abusing adult. A lot of that may have been pure luck; most was probably my parents letting me make my stupid decisions. I do know nothing they could or wanted to do would have made me act any differently.

I have 3 grown children who were basically good kids; but I also had plenty of sleepless nights and contention with each one; some more than others. They seemed to rotate. Now, I can't get enough of them; can't wait to spend time with them.

I also have an 8 year old who is beginning to send me out of my freaking mind. I caught myself counting how many years he has left of school...I live for the hours he is at school. I worry sick about what I may or may not have done that is causing his behavior. I have sleepless nights of worry...just like I did with my first 3. As I am in the midst of this pattern I feel helpless as to know what to do. I still have the teenager years with him and am so worried about what he's going to be like then...ah motherhood...

Longest comment ever. I should have left it at "I feel your pain"...which I do.

Lee of MWOB said...

Holy shit. Why did it take me so long to read this piece of brilliance? This is awesome my friend and deserves to be reprinted the world over. Truly dude. Send it out to a magazine.

:-)

Brenda Jean said...

Oh Deb, I hear you. It's like you spoke for me. I gave up a long time ago reading or listening to "experts" on raising kids/teens. There is no plan, no guidelines. Each one is unique and freaky. I wake up each day and just deal with whatever comes...which so far hasn't been horrible I guess, just annoying. I'm waiting for the horrible to rear it's ugly head. BAHAHAHAHAHAHa

Brenda Jean said...

Had to say one more thing about the green stuff, the feeding etc. MOM GUILT Companies play on our mom guilt. "Experts" play on it too. They KNOW we are so full of fricking mom guilt that we will worry about buying and doing the right things every stinkin' day. Kids are a lot tougher than we give them credit for-- they will survive and so will we:)

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