Sunday, January 27, 2008

family growing up

yes, this is my oldest son. this man-boy, who is only an inch or so shorter than i am...who is growing and bulking up and all that my first born child. he is thirteen.

it has been a rough couple of weeks...for me, for him, for his father. but something that has occurred, that i can admit was probably a bit overdue, is, as a friend of mine, calls it, "letting the roosters work their stuff out on their own." yes...i let his dad handle him this weekend, as in they worked their stuff out all on their own. (the fact that i was a couple hours away at a slumber party for hoperadio, who was turning forty, made it a hell of a lot easier...)

see, i am more patient...more empathetic...more likely to help my sons find the words for their feelings than their dad. they know this, i know knows it, too. but thirteen year old has been taking that for a way that was really disrespectful, though i'm sure that's not how he meant it to be. but just like two year olds who are egocentric and think if they walk in the street it should be safe and don't have room in their universes yet for the idea of a big, heavy, fast moving my thirteen year old was getting a bit egocentric, this time acting out of anger without considering who he might be hurting in the process or feeling any responsibility for that. and while i broadened his concept of the universe as a two year old literally to keep him safe, i feel i have to broaden his concept again...but not necessarily for his safety, which is probably why i've been so reluctant. yet i still feel the responsibility.

he can be selfish... and that's ok, we all have those times. but it rarely leaves us feeling happy, or healthy, or safe. to get angry and hurt another person and then not make it right, whether because you don't know how or just don't know why you should....that leaves everyone feeling shitty. and with as many options as we have in america for diverting our attention from that which ails us, maybe broadening his universe was necessary for his safety this time, too. either way, i think we're making it...not just through, but up and over and forward, too.

e took this picture of n and i in the lodge, having hot chocolate. n didn't want to snowboard because he'd hurt his wrist the day before. i made him go anyway. he was pissed and i was, well, stubborn. i took e skiing for awhile and when i came back, n had taped his wrist with the tape i'd given him. he had some hot chocolate with us and let me tape his wrist the rest of the way. and then he went out and snowboarded the rest of the day. he told me later he was glad i made him go. i wanted to punch him, but i hugged him and said i was glad he was having a good time.

sometimes being a mom is hard for me. i often think i just don't have the balls required for this job. i want my kids to do the right thing, and i'd really like them to do it easily. but i guess that is my own egocentricity, eh?... funny thing is, it's my children who broaden my universe....or at least hold me accountable to the lessons i'm trying to teach them in myself. (yeah, that sentence could probably use some commas for clarity, but i like the different ways i'm reading it...)

so my family keeps growing...

ps--here's a pic of n, little e, and dad... <3

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