Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Binding. And letting go. Or something.

Someone once said that Motherhood is the hardest job in the world, and the most rewarding. Amen, sister.

It's been a week of...

  • Immense heartache on Friday.
  • An episode of "Monster Mom.... Save Yourself! Hide in the Hamper!" on Saturday.
  • Some measure of silliness on Sunday.
  • Annoyance and snarkiness on Monday.
  • Oooshy-gooshy cutesy-wutesy mushy wuv and kisses on Tuesday.
  • Unspeakable joy on Wednesday.

    • ...all at the hands of these three:

      Too smart for her britches, unfathomably intelligent, and yet completely and utterly BRAINLESS at the same time. Brilliantly talented. Passionate, faithful, beautiful, authentic. Brutally honest. Wacky. Whacked. Defensive, argumentitive, beligerent. Spoiled and self-centered. So much like me it thrills me and terrifies me at the same time. And yet.... so different from me that it amazes and mezmerizes me. And terrifies me. lol

      This daughter of mine... such a gift.

      She writes more eloquently at 16 than I do at 38.
      She's more comfortable in her skin than I've EVER been in mine.
      She's got my buttons memorized... knows which ones to push and when to push 'em, and she's a persistent button pusher, too.
      She trusts me.
      She enjoys me, likes being with me,
      and what's more,
      I enjoy her, too.
      Although, there are days when I contemplate leaving her bags on the curb with a note that says, "Stick a fork in me, I'm done. Good luck. I hear that Chili's is hiring. With affection, your Mother."

      She once wrote on her own blog, about me:
      "She's made me laugh harder than anyone, and cry more often than anyone."
      It hasn't escaped me that I can write the same about her now.

      She knows herself - knows her limitations, knows her heart, knows how to balance it all, but also knows how to fool herself into thinking she's got a better handle on life than she really does.

      She's not afraid to ask for help, not afraid to tell someone else when they need it, not afraid to say she's sorry, not afraid to end a toxic friendship, not afraid of your opinion, not afraid to piss you off, not afraid to say she loves you.

      She's been dating Brian for 1 year.

      I, like every Mom, have dreams for my daughter. I, like every Mom, know that one bad choice can lead to another bad choice, to another and another, until those dreams become vapors on the wind. I can't make Dani's rules for her anymore. I mean, I can. But she's sixteen. She knows how to break rules and how to hide that she did it. I wasn't such a good kid as most people thought, see. I was just The Master of knowing how to fool Mom and Dad. I want so much more for - and from - Dani. And so she's had to come to understand that my guidelines and rules are meaningless until she buys into them herself. Wait. Maybe it's ME who had to come to that understanding.

      Whatever. What matters is, I think we've reached that point. I asked her and Brian to come up with their own rules.... rules that no one can enforce but them. Rules that they're ready to buy into. Rules that matter to THEM as much, or more, as they matter to me.

      What matters more is this: She's God's. I used to tell her as she left the house, "Don't just be good. Be God's." (Heard that from Rich Mullins, the late singer/songwriter.) Tonight, I'm singing a song on her behalf.... "She's Yours, Lord. Everything she is, and everything she's not. She's Yours, Lord, try her now and see. See if she can be completely Yours." It takes a lot of faith to raise a teenager. My faith stores have been depleted as of late. But it's been raining all week; the drought is over.

      Oh - about those rules. Here they are, posted with Dani's permission.
      Crack me UP. I love that kid, Dani.
      Love her, love her, love her!

      By the legal and binding power bestowed upon me by no one in particular, but
      rather by self-declaration, I do hereby forbid the following activities as
      specified by the Parental Units and by God Almighty, as dictated by his
      servant Paul in the decree of I Corinthians, section 7, lines 12-20:

      I. No below the belt. If there is no belt present, the belly button shall be
      the deciding factor.
      II. No under the clothing.
      III. No off with the clothing, unless, in a gentlemanly manner, the male subject offeres to take the female's jacket.
      IV. No horizontal kissing. ('Nuf said.)
      V. No horizontal ANYthing. In case of any question, a protractor will be procured to
      ensure any angle of togetherness is well above 45°.
      VI. No touching of any articles covered by undergarments. These are specified as the following:
      a. the "hoo-ha"
      b. the "tallywhacker"
      c. the "ta-tas"
      VII. No sex. Duh.

      On the 16th day of August in the year of our Lord, 2007, the following
      signatures do hereby confirm this document as legally binding and signify
      their acceptance of any consequences that should come in the case of the
      breaking of this oath.

      X Dani
      X Brian

      Here's hoping for no immense pain this week, and a little less Monster Mom. (Bring on the hugs and kisses, and a little more random silliness, please!)


      Anonymous said...

      HAHHA. you made me cry and Dani made me laugh at the same time, God, grant her the strength to follow her own rules.
      I dream to try and develop that kind of relationship with my own daughters, esp Alexandria, as she has found a "buddy" in her Step Mother, therefore keeping me out of the loop on most things, fearing the rath of mom. God Bless you both. Karen K

      Sue said...

      I love you, Stacy. I'll need you more and more as you travel down this path that I am only just beginning!

      Anonymous said...

      Stacy, The rules are fabulous. I did find a single loop hole. If Kyle XY comes a callin' you could be in trouble. Note to self - check boys for belly buttons.

      Golden Joe - Kris with a "K"'s DH

      Melissa said...

      Stacy, I know you don't know me, but I just love reading your blog. It's hilarious. I will take this rule making thing into consideration when my kids are teens. I think it's a great idea.

      The Stopper Family said...

      I love that list. I love it more that they came up with it themselves. I can only hope that when my kids are 16, they are smart enough to come up with some similar rules.

      Sarah @ Ordinary Days said...

      What a great idea for them to make up their own rules. Sounds like they might just have their heads screwed on straight. :)

      Colleen said...

      LOVE that picture of you and Dani! Totally cracks me up, as did her rules. I am in the letting go phase. DS1 starts moving into his own apartment today in Bedford. I love him and am so proud of him. We have great times together, and I will miss him terribly. I rarely see DS2. He spends every free minute with his girlfriend. I love him and am so proud of him too. But as a mom, you always see areas of their lives where you wish they were making better choices. You ache for them as a mother and always will. I tell DS1 that his diet choice of living on sugar, salt and caffeine will someday come back to haunt him. I wish he used his free time for more creative things than video games. Now that he'll be paying all his own bills, the expendable income will drop dramatically. I wish he would just live at home another year and save that rent money for a down payment on a house. But, gotta let him make his own choices, and support him, and be excited for him. I'm going out shopping today for stuff he will need. That's what moms are for.

      Christy said...

      Stacy-I feel a "journaling-lift" from the blog coming on- all the way from Toronto.

      I wish my parents had been aware enough to be aware! My husband used to say that it was a good thing that we had no girls. When we lived in the country, he said we could just haul the boyfriends out and bury them on the back 11 acre field. I guess it's a good thing we don't have girls.

      Good luck and God Speed.

      Ramblings of a crazed SAHM said...

      Man to have been that mature in a relationship when I was a teen. You've GOT to write a manual on how to raise girls! It's so amazing that Dani and her boyfriend seem to talk so their age...that seems amazing to me. I'm impressed, once again, by your incredible daughter.

      Anonymous said...

      hey mommy, go take my quiz :