I mean. Dang. It’s hard.
I thought babies were wonderfully difficult, with the sleep deprivation and constant supervision, and feeding them every 20 seconds.
But, no one warned me about teenagers!
Well, they probably did, but I was too busy inhaling my squishy baby’s neck, and sucking down coffee like an addict, and showering every so often.
You are welcome, husband. There were some days I smelled normal. 🙂
But then they turned into TEENAGERS. I don’t even know what to do, man. They are trying so hard to find their own place, figure out who they are, determine their value. And the hormones? Oh.my.lort. I’ve never seen so many tears. I want to chuckle, and kiss them, and then knock them upside the head, all at once. Ain’t nothing that’s going to make you feel more like you are living in Crazytown, population just you, than raising a teen.
Lately, I feel like I’m not getting it right on most days. And, I’m probably not. That’s ok. We have a savings fund set up for my children’s therapy.
Not really, but we should. It’s a good thought. I will tell my adult children that I wanted to help them pay for their therapy, but Starbucks was a little more necessary. I think it will go over well.
One thing I have noticed in my journey through the hormonally treacherous
Swamp of Sadness teenage years is if we can find something they are good at, we tell them. And tell them. And tell them. It’s not profound or anything new. But it is effective. And let it be known, there is always something someone is good at.
My son is a gifted artist, so we have started to invest in quality art supplies, and we talk about his drawings. When he spends hours sketching instead of watching tv, we say yes to that. We talk about his dreams for creating a comic book, and we encourage him by researching how the heck to get something like that published. We smile, when he brings his backpack to church, and spends most of his time, hunched over some crisp white paper, charcoal in his hand. We beam when his little 4 and 5 year old cousins watch him draw, and think he is the best thing on earth, third only to their daddy, and Captain America, respectively.
We tell him.
My daughter is becoming a wonderful makeup artist, so we let her do our makeup sometimes. And yes, she is 12, and we have to fix some things when she isn’t looking. We don’t freak when she borrows our makeup… most of the time. We invest in quality makeup for her, and show her how to take care of it. We watch youtube videos together about how to do certain techniques. And we praise the heck out of her when she walks out of her bedroom with a full cat eye and red lip. And then we tell her she has to wash that off before she leaves the house. And she does. And then an hour later, we praise her again when she sports a completely different makeup look.
We tell her.
Obviously, this is a good thing to do for any human. Tell them what they are good at. Tell them. And tell them. And tell them.
Our daughter is also a phenomenal babysitter. And she wants to care for babies more than you can even imagine. She asks me to tell all my friends that she is for hire. And, frankly, sometimes I’m a bit over the whole thing. But.. then I remember I’m supposed to tell her what she is good at. She serves in our church nursery every.single.week. She is learning ministry by loving on babies. Yes to that.
She has asked me to make her business cards for weeks and weeks. I’m sad to say, I’m just now getting around to it. Shame on me.
We designed this tonight.
She walked away with a happy little smile on her face.
And the words of this blog post hit me. And I needed to share that with you. Maybe you can’t design a biz card for your teen, but you can do other things. Maybe it’s signing your kiddos up for that cooking class, or taking one together. Or it’s going to their millionth soccer game, and cheering just as loudly as you did at their first. You know exactly what it is.. I’m here to encourage you to tell your people what they are good at, and show them you agree.
Tell them, and tell them, and tell them.Pin It