Monday, November 07, 2005

They're Coming to Take Me Away Ha-haaa!

I know, I know - I've been MIA for a bit. I could give you all kinds of excuses about being busy and such, but that's not why. Let me explain....

People have asked me, "How do you do it?". Married couples cannot fathom ever doing it alone. I simply answer: "You do what ya gotta do". Just like every parent.

It can, at times, be easier being a single parent. As Stallone so aptly put it, "I am da law". What I say goes. There is no playing one parent against the other, no disagreements on discipline. No power struggles. The drawback to that is - you don't get a break. You are it, 24/7. There is no power in the words "Wait till your father gets home", cause Papa don't live here. I'm lucky that I get a break once a week. My wonderful parents take my son overnight most Thursdays for me. That's my alone time. That's the time I have to recharge my batteries, be calm and quiet. That's the time I have to regroup and get a firmer grip on my sanity. A grip I am fighting to hang on to.

Children can tire you out with their endless energy, questions and exploration, but they are easily manageable. Mom & Dad are in charge. That fact is not in question. We can protect them from danger, teach them and make them laugh.

Yes, children can tire you out, but just wait. Teenagers are exhausting.

Common sense, reason & logic are out the window. At least your common sense, reason & logic are. Everything you do as a parent becomes questionable. Every boundary, every responsibility, everything you say becomes a barrier to the life they feel entitled to. The humor and silliness that once made them laugh results in sullen looks and slamming doors. Protecting them from danger becomes a slippery slope of giving them the freedom to make their own decisions and wanting to keep them from the consequences of the wrong ones. They have, after all, forgotten everything you have taught them to this point. That, or they dismiss it as nothing more than you being overprotective or trying to baby them. They have become all knowing, invincible, immortal. They think they are masters of their own destiny. They know what's best for them. The fact that you have more than twice the life experience of them just makes you, old. You want to give them freedom to become their own person. You want them to become responsible adults. You want to kick them in the ass for being so opposed to accepting the wisdom of experience. You want scream at the top of your lungs, "Since you're so friggin smart, get out and support yourself!"

But, you don't. At least, not with meaning. There is still a thread of the umbilical that whispers the truth. The thought of leaving the safety of home is too daunting to risk. It's a thread you both hang on to. Teenagers tug at it, parents let out some slack. There comes a point where there is no slack left and the connection breaks. Then, all you can do is hope and pray they take enough of what you have given them to flourish in adulthood.

We are not there yet. But I am having one hell of a tug-o-war!

I have been too exhausted to form coherent thoughts. The creative juices have receded into the recesses of my brain like a pair of testicles in a cold pool. The mental and emotional energy necessary to get through a 24 hour period with a teenager could solve the worlds natural energy depletion, if we could harness it.

This is the dark side of being a single parent.

I am being eaten alive, one molecule at a time. I can feel it happening, but there is nothing I can do about it. I catch glimpses of myself in the mirror. There is a haunting, empty look in my eyes, much like what I saw in my Grandfather near the end.

I can picture myself in a mental ward. Drool on my chin, unable to focus on anything tangible. People will look sadly upon me and ask "What happened to her?" The Doctors will reply, "TEENAGER", and all will nod sadly, knowingly, sympathetically.


izchan said...


*more hugs*

No words can be said to relieve you.

No known words of man anyway.

All I think I can do is to pray that you find the strength in little things to carry on.

And that the lord see fit to shower you with little dropless of sunshine so that you can find your way in the darkness.

I understand what you are talking about though I am not in it yet. But I do have young friends. And I hear them rant.

you do know that this will go on from 13 - 30. In which by that time, they are too old to deny that they have been fools. :)

I know because I can't hide behind the word "teen" anymore ... :)

*strong back breaking hug*

stay safe.

The blogger support group is here to stay.

KFarmer said...

ohh sweetie- you will be ok. You will really! You have too much spark and love of life to let a teenager suck it right out of you.

If this helps I remember chanting these words "don't let the *&^* grind you down, dont let the...

Keep up the good fight! You are all powerful! You are the MOM!


Sharfa said...

Thank you both. Perhaps that came off a bit darker than I intended. I am OK, really. I know we'll get through it, hopefully alive. I meant that piece to be more sarcastic and tongue in cheek than it came off. It sounds a lot better than: "My kid is exhausting me, I've been to wiped out to write".

izchan said...

:) ... as long as you take it one stride of the time.

Chunks said...

I can totally relate!! My fifteen year old daughter has been making me completely insane for the last couple of weeks. Maybe it is something in the air...