August 20, 2009

Things I have learned from my teen/If these walls could talk

Prepare for an uber-long post as I have decided to tackle two prompts from Mama Kat’s workshop.  What can I say – they both “spoke” to me and I have a lot to say on each subject.  Sorry.

What I have learned from my teen.

Well, technically, the prompt from Mama Kat’s workshop was: Things I have learned from my toddler (inspired by Big Mama Cass).  But, as I am so far past toddler years, I figured I’d be forgiven for tweaking it a bit.

I have learned that teen boys are like starving hyenas.  They will eat just about anything they can get their little paws on – provided they don’t have to make it.  They eat all day and all night long.  If you aren’t careful they will actually swipe the food from your plate.  And never, under any circumstances, try to get a bite of something they are eating as this can be downright dangerous!  If you hide it from them, they sniff it out and scarf it down.  This can make for an excellent diet plan as there is never any food in the house.

I have learned that, much like a toddler, teens are very demanding.  They sometimes have an over-exaggerated sense of entitlement and sometimes can be quite defiant.  But, usually, will back down when Momma Bear slaps him down (figuratively of course, since he’s now twice the size of Momma Bear).

Again, like a toddler, the teen has an innate curiosity and asks all kinds of questions.  Unfortunately, they are also lazy and if you don’t know the answer and tell them to look it up (either on the internet or, heaven forbid, in a book) they will not do so.

According to said teen, parents are quite stupid and they are quite amazed that the parents have been able to survive on their own this long.  I’m told that as the teen ages the parents become much smarter.

Teens have very strong opinions.  On everything.  It does not make sense to argue with them because they will have the last word no matter what.  It is better to let them figure out for themselves that no, practice did not start at 4:00 like they thought – but instead at 5:00 like the parent knew.  Let the teen sit there and wait for an hour.  It builds character and keeps your blood pressure down.

I have also learned that teens will retain some of what you taught them as toddlers.  They may not exhibit it all the time; but will occasionally surprise you by doing exactly the things you spent so many years trying to drill into them.  Such as being thoughtful and kind to others.  Helping people who need it.  Being respectful to ones elders.  Generally, these actions won’t be aimed at the parents but still. . . you will have a sense of pride and accomplishment when you see, or more likely, hear about these actions.

I am still in the process of learning to let go.  This is hard.  I am learning to teach him to spread his wings.  This is also hard.  How can I let him go out into the world when I have spent so many years trying to protect him?  Taking care of him?  Kissing his boo-boos all better?  As we go forward, I won’t be able to do this for him anymore.  This will be the hardest lesson yet I fear.  But, I am learning, from him to look forward into the future with great anticipation.  Anticipation of who he will become and what adventures the world has in store for him. 

If these walls could talk. (inspired by Jenny Mac from Let’s Have a Cocktail.)

If these walls could talk . . . oh the gossip that would be told.  The scandals of co-workers would be trumpeted about.  Tales of deception, trickery and back-stabbing would be bared for all to see.

Friendships made and friendships broken.  Joys and sorrows shared.  Joys and sorrows gloated over.

The ones who work so very diligently and those who are slackers would all be exposed.

The reasons behind ludicrous-seeming decisions and edicts from on high would become clear for all to see.

Petty jealousies would be revealed – most likely shocking neighboring cubicle and office dwellers.

If these walls could talk people who obsess over the actions of others for no good reason would be brought to light.

The suspicion and distrust of a non-transparent upper-management would be clear. 

Oh if these walls could talk . . . the things that would come out.  Maybe it’s better that they can’t.

Note:  I actually like my job and most of the people I work with; but this is what I see when I look around at a lot of people in this company.  I have to wonder how all these people with the same attitude came to work here?  Or have they just become conditioned that way after being here awhile?  Hmmmm. 


  1. I can so relate to the keeping blood pressure low by just stepping back sometimes and letting them make their own mistakes. Life is a great teacher. It is true that the older they get, the smarter you get. He'll get there eventually.

  2. I'm also finding letting go hard, I forget son is fifteen and old enough to make some of his own decisions. A hard lesson for all involved I expect. I can't imagine it gets any easier with subsequent children either. gulp!
    I can't comment on if walls could talk in a work place but certainly the school playground can be battlefield. :0)

  3. Sometimes I read things that make me happy that I am unable to have children while at the same time make me sad. This is one of them.
    It sounds like you are doing a great job.

  4. Quick note: I forgot to tell you I came from Mama kat's and I am so going to try your idea!

  5. Awesome, awesome post! I am sure when my two boys are teenagers all of our savings will go to buying food!