Tuesday, January 04, 2011

kill me now

I was informed tonight, in her very delicate, demure manner, that I am apparently the ONLY parent who pays any attention to my child's grades on the WHOLE ENTIRE PLANET. This was news to me. Which is why I laughed out loud in her face when she said it. That probably wasn't the best tactical move. But it followed so quickly on the heels of being informed that it was ALL MY FAULT my daughter has NO TIME TO DO ANYTHING because I MAKE her do senseless extra work like correcting her math papers in order to regain some of the credit she lost, that I just couldn't contain myself. It just kind of bubbled out. It was also made clear, in a similar tone, that I DON'T CARE about her because I EXPECT HER TO BE PERFECT and INSIST ON CHECKING EVERY LITTLE CRAPPIN' THINK SHE DOES. I agreed with her. That is most definitely a sign of NOT CARING. In fact, I must absolutely HATE HER.

Which is why I've spent eleven years cultivating a relationship with this child that I pray will withstand all the storms that are a-brewin' in our neck of the woods. Which is why I sacrifice my time, my energy, my money, my freedom, my dreams and desires so that SHE can do what she desires. Which is why I lose sleep at night thinking about things like not being able to afford another year of gymnastics and the conflict that's going on in her little universe and how to speak to matters of the heart when all she wants is to do whatever she wants. It's all because I really, truly, don't give a rip. Really.


Somewhere along the line some ugly little hormones have reared their ugly little heads and turned my daughter, for brief periods of time, into an ugly little snot. I don't like it. The tone of voice. The lack of patience. The outbursts of anger with not even a cursory nod toward the pretense of self control. And the lack of remorse or responsibility for any of it. To her, the eye-rolling, book-throwing, pencil-breaking, yelling-screaming-crying-threatening-stomping-off is all completely justified. Which is possibly what concerns me most.

This is not a child I was permissive with. Nor is this a child I controlled and micro-managed. This was your normal, every-day girl-next-door who was obedient and cheerful and occasionally a pain in the fanny but usually felt pretty convicted about it later. I wonder if she is still that child. I want to believe she is. I want to believe this is just hormonal and nothing evil and sinister is lurking beneath the surface. But I can't know that. And it can scare the crap out of me if I let it.

When I got home tonight, her face lit up and she hugged me and followed me around as I got my dinner, babbling like a brook about her day. When I kissed her goodnight, she wouldn't even speak to me, because I am apparently the MEANEST PARENT IN THE WORLD. I know not to take it personally, and so I don't. I know not to freak out and lecture her, and so I don't. I know not to worry about it because it's normal, but I do anyway. Because I feel icy, cold fingers wrapping themselves around the part of my heart engraved with her name, and I'm chilled to the bone to consider the possibilities of what could await me as we move full force into this new stage of life.

May heaven either help me, or kill me now.


Julie M said...

Do not ever let a teacher define your good parenting style. We aren't getting paid to love or evaluate our children.
Continue on, be as consistent as you can and pray for the best. The Lord has you and your daughter in his hands.
You can do this. You're a great mom. She will love you when it's all over. She will.

lorie said...

Thanks, Juls. Good truth. Miss you.