20 August, 2015

Good times and bad times with teens

The other day I saw a clever blog post about the dangers of "trick babies".  

I relate. I had one, my first born slept through the night the first night home from hospital! Not that I haven't had significant other struggles with him. He wasn't a perfect trick baby, nor has been a perfect "trick child". Here's the point where I could add some stories to embarrass him (he reads my blog), but I'll hold back. 

Turns out he's been something of a trick teen. Not perfect, but nice compared to the horror stories parents with preteen kids shudder at. I've even enjoyed him, more so as a teen than when he was younger (he has a sense of humor now, for example). 

Again I have a privacy issue here and don't wish to expose my kids with details. Suffice to say that in recent months our family has seen more emotional ups and downs in a day (or hour), than we've ever had before. Some of it is the transition, but not all. There are hormones at work. It's hard! And that's saying it nicely. 
Sometimes parenting is like climbing a
wall. Very tough at times and while there is
some element of control, many times
it's your own particular piece of
"wall" that determines your progress.

However I had a wonderful day with my two older boys yesterday. As I mentioned yesterday we went downtown to shop and volunteer at the JEMA office. 

We also had fun with what I've discovered is the way to a teen's heart: food. We stopped for a snack at Maccas discovering that Japanese thick shakes are way more awesome that Australian ones (thicker), had a Subway/convenience store lunch, and finished off on the way home with donuts from Mister Donuts. I love sitting across from my boys and chatting. This was a form of the old "divide and conquer" parenting strategy. Two boys were more fun than three boys sometimes are. We also had better conversation than many times we eat together at home.

We made a score at the game shop, finding amidst hundreds of games you've never heard of, a game they've played and also labelled as "awesome". Even the two and a half hours of packaging-for-mailing we did in the afternoon was great fun. Happy conversation and more smiles than I've seen in one afternoon for a long time. We even got away with "pranking" each other (something a serious teen seems to struggle with, I'm learning more all the time). 

Not a perfect day. There were still unexplained sudden dips in moods and nit picking. But overall a very successful day. One I'd happily repeat. 

Back to teens. I've seen other difficult teens grow up and become well balanced adults (just not experienced it as a parent). So I'm clinging to the hope that this present pain is but a passing stage. Plus I move forward with the memory of the likes of yesterday, the glimpses of young men who are fun, clever, discerning, and even enjoy being responsible. 


Georgia said...

Goodonya Wendy!

Wendy said...

Thanks Georgia.