Tweet from Heather (@momsfranticmind)

It takes its toll to always be the strong 1, especially when that person has to stand alone. Be kind & don’t judge their weaknesses
(https://twitter.com/momsfranticmind/status/318425141329661954)

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Un-discussed issue of Teen Parenting

With the Mtv hit show “Teen Mom” and just issues in my own life, something crossed my mind. Something I need my kids to know, and every kid to know. To be aware of.

TEEN MOM

I am guilty of watching the show Teen mom. I don’t know why. Maybe that old saying about a train wreck no one wants to see but can’t stop watching? Maybe it’s because it shows young moms can still be good moms, good moms can still have moments of poor judgement. Emotions can get the best of us all.

I think it’s great how Dr Drew points out the reality’s that teen parents struggle with. But truthfully….all parents struggle with most of the same issues. I think the issue that needs to be focused on is when your a young mom or dad, you are growing up with your child…and they are watching it all.

I was 18 when I got pregnant, with twins. I had them at 19. To say my life was stable and structured, prepared even, is false. I had the same boyfriend for over 3 years. He was a great guy (3 years older than I) but had started a secret life involving drugs. ¬†We lived on our own, he was buying the home we lived in. He worked full time. I worked 2 part time jobs and had just started college. I had graduated high school a year early and earned a nearly full ride scholarship for college. Then I got pregnant….with twins…did I mention I was only 18? ūüôā My mom was in her mid-life crisis, my dad was dying of cancer, and my boyfriend decided he couldn’t handle the situation. He called my parents one night, locked himself in the bathroom and told my parents to come get me. We had lived together for over 2 years so this was all a shock.

Looking back now at 35, I see things so different than I did at 18. What kids need to realize is parents are expected to be perfect…but they can’t be. No one can. Kids look to their parents to always be strong. Always have the answers. Always do the right thing. Always have the finances to say yes. And when the parent isn’t strong, doesn’t have the answer, your kid will never forget about it. Just think of your parents. Everyone has several stories about something their parent did that traumatized their childhood. But parents aren’t always perfect. I believe even the good ones screw up sometimes. Parents can’t be perfect. Life isn’t a movie. It takes it’s toll to always put others first. Sometimes you feel like you’re forgotten. You feel unappreciated, disrespected, exhausted and ask yourself “what about my feelings?”. But you are the parent…is it selfish to feel these things? You are human too!

I gave birth to two beautiful healthy twin girls at just 19. The problem with the show Teen Mom, the focus is put on being just that. A teen mom. Would one year have made a difference for me? If I had waited just one year I would have been 20. No longer a teen mom. But one year? Hell no! 5 years? Hell no! I think 10 years would have made a world of difference. And not because I regret that I had to sacrifice and struggle to raise kids when I wasn’t ready. It’s because my kids wouldn’t have had to grow up watching me grow up. With a 10 year delay hopefully I would have been more aware on how to ensure my kids grow up in one home vs two allowing my kids to grow up without splitting holidays and birthdays, missing out on family outings because it’s the other parents scheduled time. Even if you get along with the other parent, it’s hard. Whether your 16 or 20, your not ready. That doesn’t mean you won’t be a good parent. It just means your kids will grow up watching you make the mistakes it takes in life to learn how to be a good person. Those will be the stories they share with others and the memories they have.

Life is hard, parenting is hard, single parenting is very hard. What I wish I knew 20 years ago? Parents mess up, even good ones. The weight on our shoulders can become to much to bare sometimes and even parents will fall. It takes alot out of you to always be the rock. Always trying to make the right decisions and the stress over it. And when you get past one hurdle there’s a couple more to jump out at you, testing your skills and your limits. And sometimes you won’t handle situations perfect, sometimes emotions get the best of you, even parents. Especially the good ones.

Spectacular Summer Seed Spitting War

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this mom seems to be rebelling from herself….

reb·el

[n., adj. reb-uhl; v. ri-bel]

noun

1. a person who refuses allegiance to, resists, or rises in arms against the government or ruler of his or her country.
2. a person who resists any authority, control, or tradition.
adjective
3.rebellious; defiant.
4. of or pertaining to rebels.
verb (used without object) re·bel

5.¬†to¬†reject,¬†resist,¬†or¬†rise¬†in¬†arms¬†against¬†one’s¬†government¬†or ruler.
6. to resist or rise against some authority, control, or tradition.
7. to show or feel utter repugnance: His very soul rebelled at spanking the child.

(definition compliments of dictionary.com)

Yes, I said it. I admit it, I own it, I am acknowledging this. I am rebelling from my own parenting strategy plan! Let me explain.

Time is not on my side

Let’s see. On a typical day my alarm clock starts going off at 5:30 am. Well, really it’s 5:23 am. I fool myself by setting the clock ahead. If I were to use an easy round number (say 10 minutes) it’s pretty darn easy to figure out what time it really is, even at 5 in the morning. I know I have enough time to hit snooze a few times, but I’m honestly so tired in the morning I can’t remember how many times I hit it already. Then to do the math in my head for the 7 minute (which I’m thinking I should at least double this now) trick, oh shoot, just get out of bed. On a good day I am out of bed by 6 am.

Immediately I need to feed the cat, then the dogs, but Emmy’s food needs to soak in hot water for a few minutes because she’s old, clean the water dish and fill that up. Once I dump the first cup of food in the dog dish, my daughter will grumble and slam her bedroom door closed. How dare I wake them up before they need to curl their hair! Maybe sweep the kitchen floor, flip the laundry I didn’t finish the night before. Breakfast, I take a handful of vitamins every morning so I need food in my stomach first, breakfast is usually a banana or apple, maybe a protein bar. Fill up my ice water jug, because I have to drink 8 ounces of water with my vitamins, otherwise I’m backed up again.. and I NEED to take the vitamins because this mom doesn’t eat right or enough which just drags me down more….

I typically will practice our tricks with the dogs. Sit, down, up, speak, sing, dance, for whatever reason my dogs love this. I’m sure it’s the treats. Anyway, time for my shower (I have to bring Emmy’s food in the bathroom to feed her, otherwise Toby will devour her food…I also might scrub the tiles or tub), wake up Ryan. Waking up Ryan takes at least 45 minutes. I will go in and out of his room about 5 times trying to wake him. Toby is adorable and will climb into his bed when he hears me trying this. Toby will stand over Ryan and sniff in his ear and face. I honestly think this is Toby’s way of helping me out ūüôā I need to make sure Ryan’s taken his anti-seizure meds, remind him a dozen times to stay on track and brush his teeth. While doing this I’m attempting to put on some make up to hide my dark circles under my eyes. Let the dogs out again, get Ryan off to school (damn he forgot his book bag again!) get Toby in his kennel for the day and grab my purse heading to work. As you can see, I haven’t even started my day. ¬†I think you get my point about a lack of time for me.

Who has some energy to spare?

I’m exhausted. Completely and utterly exhausted. Now I’m suppose to come home and immediately start with the kids. I need to inspect for “children droppings” and see if they “stole” any fun without doing their jobs. (I’ll explain more later) But all I want to do when I walk in is go hide in my room for a 15 minute break. A break from the world. Just 15 minutes that I don’t have to smile at anyone, or greet them. 15 minutes of not listening to anyone else. 15 minutes to lay down because my back has been killing me…But I can’t get this. It shouldn’t be a big deal…but for me it is…

At least the dogs greet me with a smile ūüôā

Dude….that’s my mom

Warning: some language may offend some by reading this….if that means you then read the next blog instead of mine because today I just don’t give a shit.

I’m learning all about becoming my children’s advocate. And as much as I hate politics, there seems to be a lot of that crap when it comes to school districts, policies, etc. This mom has grown tired.

~I’m tired of adults acting like children.

~I’m tired of my teenagers being given the freedom that even some adults shouldn’t have…and having to force people to let my god damn kids be kids!! Give them rules damn it!

~I’m tired of having to flag my emails to remind me to follow-up with some other jack-ass to make sure they did their job.

~I’m tired of having post-its of all shapes, sizes and colors¬†all over my world because if I don’t remember to do it…well damn it just won’t get done!

~I’m tired of people trying to walk all over me. (I have learned to be the pain in their ass if I expect anyone to honor their words)

~I’m tired of having to prove myself to anyone that I am not one to mess with. This lady has learned, I’ve walked a million miles (not literally just that life has not been easy) and I know I have to work harder to get what is right…that’s the deck I’ve been dealt. And unfortunately some of you have been dealt the other hand in my card game…good luck, may the best player win.

~I am just tired.

Here is the letter I emailed to my daughters school dean, her teacher, the acting¬†superintendent of the district, and the president of the school board. (because guess what…I am that fucking mom the suits warned you about….maybe my kids are right..I’m crazy.)

Mr. (fill in the name here: because truth be told I wasn’t trying to get this guys attention. I should have had¬†his attention¬†months ago. I copied the higher-ups to this email because I’m god damn tired of wasting my time to tell you shit heads how to do your fucking jobs!)

I appreciate you addressing my concerns with my daughter leaving the school for school activities without parental consent.

My daughter told me you spoke with her yesterday and explained she is to check with you before leaving school grounds during scheduled school time, and you will then call me to confirm if it’s ok. I think it’s important to clarify our conversation because this isn’t how I understood things. Last night at conferences I also spoke to Mrs.(teachers name here) directly and advised her as well.

My daughter is 15 years old and has NO reason to leave school property, especially without my consent. I am NOT and HAVE NOT given my consent for her to leave school to ride along with her friend to collect payments from business’s (for the school newspaper). Shouldn’t the school take better precautions? What happens if the student that is driving gets in an accident and my daughter gets hurt? Isn’t this why there is permission slips required from parents for a child to attend a field trip? Who is liable?

I understand there are responsibilities for the newspaper staff. But it does not take more than one student to go collect a check from a business, which could just be mailed. If it is preferred a student go to the business that would best be handled by a senior staff member.

I am extremely frustrated how this issue has been handled given previous problems. I hope this clarifies any confusion on your part

Signed,

that thorn in your ass that copied your boss to this email!

Now, I type on my blog proud as can be. Mind you tonight was day two of parent teacher conferences and lo and behold I had finally gotten the Dean’s¬†attention. Mr Dean of the school was very kind and clarified understanding my rules and that things will be corrected. He agreed with all I said and even apologized for the lack of his attention previously, and to be honest he seemed sincere. He seemed sincere that he agreed my daughter deserves to be a kid for the last few years she has to do so. He seemed sincere when he told me they wish more parents were this involved. He seemed sincere when he told my daughter repeatedly “one day you will thank your mom for this”. Either he was faking which would mean he’s really a good liar) or he realized how much this mom loves her kids and how far this mom will go for them.

I know my daughter will read this and likely be upset and embarrassed “what if my friends see that!”. But given the fact that my kids are used to my obsessive determination, they might just¬†laugh at me. Maybe even tell a few selected friends about it. I would prefer they be proud of me. Even for a second admitting in their hearts that one day they will realize how utterly and completely exhausted I must have been with life, and I still made the time to address issues regarding their safety and education….repeatedly when needed. Sigh… Well a mother can dream can’t she!

Regardless how my kids react to this post, I must be completely honest… I felt like a total bad ass tonight! Although I would like to think this means the school¬†will take me more serious in the future, past experience tells me they seem to forget quickly.

So until next time…at least for tonight I¬†can scream “SCORE FOR THIS MOM”!

And if¬†my daughters¬†friends give them a hard time, hopefully they will just say “DUDE!…….that’s my mom!”

(Inside joke…note to my girls: at least I’m not spitting popcorn at them like your crazy grandma! ¬†I love you mom!)

Parenting a teen tips?

Things are so different now for my kids than they were for me when I was their age…How do you parent a kid and discipline them, ground them from electronics when they have access everywhere they turn! And these kids are smarter than the parents at using all the technology. How are we parents suppose to be a step ahead of them! Once I think I figured out how I realize I’m a¬†fool and go hide in my room while I try to figure out how in the world I can beat them this time.

I never skipped class, NEVER! I was too scared of my mom (thank you mom!)¬†I was that weird kid you knew that always did the right thing..always did what she was told to do, even if I hated it! Most people knew why, my parents scared the death out of me and I wasn’t ballsy enough to test them. But at the time I thought I was too cool and I’m sure I liked to think that’s what others thought.

My mom even says how I was the easy one, I didn’t give her any trouble. Mind you I lived with my boyfriend at 16 and worked two jobs while I went to school. I never went to a party. I never had a one night stand or slept around with all the guys on the football team. I didn’t get drunk, do drugs or smoke.

Yes, I lived with my boyfriend and his aging mother when I was just 16. But I still did what I was told. I went to school every day, on time. I got great grades and worked my butt off. I graduated high school a year early and started college at 17 with a scholarship. (then I got pregnant with twins but we’ll save that story for another crappy day)

But now looking back, now I realize what my mom meant when she warned me about giving up my childhood. She specifically told me she didn’t want me to miss out on school dances or clubs or friends. I was a teenager, enough said! I thought she was jealous of me and my devoted boyfriend. (HAHA! To this day she loves throwing this in my face, with good reason¬†I guess.)

Now I sit here, 34-year-old¬†mother of 3, divorced and lonely. I didn’t make those lifelong friends my mom talked about. I didn’t join any of the clubs. I didn’t go to one school dance. I lived like an old married lady. I went to school, then work, then home to watch movies with my boyfriend and our dog. Sometimes we’d go out for dinner, but that is really how I remember my boring teen life. Kinda regret letting go of the opportunity to live free without responsibility and party like a crazy person! ūüôā

Now I have two, yes TWO beautiful 15-year-old¬†daughters. They are great girls, I’ve been very lucky. They’re smart, talented, popular, active in school programs and yes they’ve been to a few dances. I hate checking their phones¬†and Facebook¬†accounts, but really there is just too much that could happen. I didn’t check, I trusted their judgement, the same mistake my mother made with me when I was their age…and my girls had gotten a little¬†out of hand. No they didn’t get pregnant! (Thank god) But they both got their first ‘D’! They got disrespectful at times throwing their attitude around like they were in charge. They were totally self involved, one worried me more than the other. But just when you think things are okay, the other one throws a curve ball and the result is gray hair! I seriously have apologized to my mom for being a lazy selfish teenager who just thought the laundry washed itself, the pets poop disappeared in thin air,¬†I assumed life was easier than my parents made it seem. I thought “I will be so much better than this! and I would never make my kids go through this!” Life has its way¬†of throwing a heavy dose of reality at you when you think you know better. I guess life thought I needed ALOT of reality checks, but I’m learning to take them in stride.

What is my fear? That I won’t succeed in raising great kids. Kids that have respect for themselves and other. Kids that are determined and motivated to do good things. Kids that graduate from college and become successful in their lives. I want my kids to be better than I was. On one hand I did the right things, but at 18 I lost my focus. I got so wrapped up in my boyfriend I didn’t care about college or a career. I want my kids to stay on track and keep their goals in center stage! I don’t want them to miss out on making the right choices for their future. I am terrified that all our hard work will go down the toilet. I’m terrified some schmuck will walk in and light their world (temporarily) and they won’t care about anything else but being with that person. I’m scared they’ll screw up like I did. I want better for them. They deserve so much better. I hope they understand that’s where all my ‘slamming down the hammer’ is from, fear of the known. I don’t want them stuck in life. I want them to spread their wings and soar. Because they are amazing and I don’t want them to forget that.

Please my dear angels sent from above…don’t ever forget how truly amazing you are. And know that I am just trying my hardest to help guide you. And no matter what please know I never want you to leave. I want you to stay as those adorable 4-year-old¬†girls with the Bronx¬†accents singing “I pledge allegiance”, I’m still quite selfish I guess. It’s only because you are so awesome and I just want to protect you from all the hurt this world can do. Please don’t forget this.

Ashley’s art #2

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