Kids, You Can't Live With Them, But...

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It seems like it was just yesterday that my 13-year-old had the flu, and I spent several sleepless nights checking on her to make sure she was okay.  As I sat there in the dark with her while she was sleeping, I remembered doing the same thing when I first brought her home from the hospital.  I was exhausted, and when she was awake, I couldn't wait for her to go to sleep, but as soon as she was asleep, I immediately went into worried mother mode and had to keep checking to make sure she was still breathing.  

I guess some things never change.  Fast forward to Sunday afternoon after a full week off from school.  I asked if she had finished her homework and got "the look."  If you are a parent, and your kid has hit puberty, you know the look.  For the rest of you, it's a cross between the look you want to give your boss when he/she asks you to work late the day you have a date and the one you give him after you've taken a sick day when you really weren't sick.  It's that perfect combo of, "You are an idiot," and "I want to lie to you, but I know you'll know that I'm lying."

When she gave me the look, I knew I would quickly become her worst nightmare, and yes, we did have a tense conversation about responsibility and trust.  But then I remembered how I felt when she was sick: how concerned and scared I was for her.  I decided to try explaining that the reason I was so upset with her was because I wanted her to have opportunities.  She listened thoughtfully, and we agreed on a plan to get the homework done.  I walked away feeling smug and self-satisfied.  It was a feeling that lasted about 24 hours.  What happened to change it?  On Monday night I asked, "Did you do your homework?"  Need I say more?  I wonder if Sherry had these problems?

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About the author


Gina is a freelance writer/blogger/fashion stylist in the Los Angeles area. She loves to consult on scripts and wardrobe.

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