We have a new radio station in my home town that plays pop music from the 90’s. Technically, I guess the kids ’round here are calling it an oldies station…but I just can’t go that far. All I know is, its music I listened to growing up and its funny how quickly a song can turn into a memory (you see what I just did there Mari?).
I just heard the song “Two Occasions” by Babyface. Man, this song captured the essence of my adolescent heartache. I used to crush HARD. When I decided to like a young man, I was committed. I guess I’ve always been a sensitive, romantic artist type.
(Here is the YouTube link I found, the video is TERRIBLY awesome.)
Who will ever know the amount of time spent in front of the bathroom mirror singing my pain away and acting as if I was in front of a wind machine filming my music video. You never knew a white girl could get down so hard on New Edition or Jodeci! Time spent in front of the same mirror, perfecting the art of a messy bun or high pony-tail (with the ever necessary, carefully pulled strands of hair on either side of your face to mirror the T-Boz look). Strait gangsta. Never mind that I was a chubby, red-headed white kid from Northern Nevada. The struggle was real. I wish I could get my hands on the journals and notebooks I kept my two years of middle school. That is when I discovered that writing could make me feel better about things that were bothering me, though mostly all it did was get me in trouble for writing trash talk and bad poetry about everyone.
Back when there wasn’t anything quite as painful as not having anyone to couple skate with at the roller rink on a Friday night (that is IF my parents allowed me to go). The dramas that we had were so REAL and PASSIONATE. If a boy and girl dated longer than two weeks it was the REAL DEAL. The fights and squabbles we had were ridiculous. That was when we had to actually write notes with pens and pencils on binder paper, fold them up and pass them to each other. No texting, no social media. Just good old-fashioned rubbish. Simpler times that seemed so intense while I was living them. Looking back now, it only makes me laugh! If I had only known how short that time would be, I would not have rushed through it.
Now, I can’t help but wonder about my son who is going to be 9 this winter, and what kind of teenager he is going to mutate into in a few short years. I can’t even allow myself to imagine what kind of teenager my daughter will be yet. Gives me heartburn. I think about all of the little triumphs and tragedies they will experience that I might not even get to know about because I’ll be the old boring mom. Soon enough, they will have a whole secret world of thought and dreams and loves and heartbreak that my Hubs and I will only be spectators of. Rooting and cheering or grieving from the sidelines as we watch and pray with bated breath for a strong and victorious finish.
Its only in thinking of my kids growing older that I can appreciate this line from John Mayer”s song “No Such Thing”:
And all of our parents, they’re getting older.
I wonder if they’ve wished for anything better?
While in their memories, tiny tragedies.
They love to tell you, stay inside the lines.
But something’s better on the other side.
I wonder if my own parents watched my teenage years approach with as much reservation, nervousness and even a little excitement/sadness that I feel for my own kids?
Did they hope and pray ( as I do for mine) that I would stay inside the lines and get it right?? Did they know deep down (as I do) that, that isn’t at all possible? Will I remember this when my kids are older and steeped deeply within the dramas and concerns of their social world, that they will make mistakes and not stay inside the lines? Will my husband and I remember how enormous it felt to crush on someone the first time, and be rejected the first time, and yes, even get into trouble (real trouble) for the first time? Will we lose our minds and take it personally? Will we show grace and understanding while still providing direction and discipline? Will we be able to keep a foot in the door with our kids so that we can really know whats going on with them??
Luckily, I don’t have to have all of these answers today, and most likely never will. I will just have to trust God with my babies who loves them even more than my husband I do. But I do wonder about the little people they are becoming and if they will be ok.
This evolution of roles and growing up stuff isn’t for sissy’s.