Beautiful Life

Raising a teenager is ever so much fun.

My daughter is an amazingly bright & brilliant girl, but she’s also a normal teen, with her mood swings & melodrama. She eavesdrops on every conversation, she is better at picking stuff up than the CIA, so I’ve had to resort to either conversing via text (as my phone needs a fingerprint to unlock) in my house or hiding personal aspects of my adult life because otherwise she will know. She’s also like me; strong willed, over-achieving & determined. So, we have our moments where I’m the mean mom & she’s being somehow neglected, despite her lovely home, nice clothes, guitar & Jiujitsu lessons & shiny green iPhone. Please alert Child Services haha.

This past month, my child came to me with two requests; she wanted to transfer to the Roman Catholic school system for grade nine & a nose ring. I said no to both initially, the former because I don’t like her basing her major life choices on gossip & the latter because when I opted to do crazy stuff like piercings & tattoos, I was in my 20’s. Not to mention I did just consent to the blue hair, I think I’ve been fair.

Yes. I thought this looked good.
Yes. I thought this looked good.

But, she surprised me by coming to me with real research. The Roman Catholic school has a better science program & on site math tutoring, and as she’s chosen Kinesiology as her major (in case her goal of multi time WWE Divas Champion doesn’t pan out) so having those things will benefit her. The feeder school is trades based, so her University applications won’t be taken as seriously. Uniforms will prevent her from feeling envious & wanting expensive brand name clothes & the school has a better athletics department with a focus on track & field, her preferred sport. She presented a logical argument, so I relented & come fall 2015, she will be transferred to the Roman Catholic high school…

…then she said all of her friends have nose rings so why not her & she lost that round.

But I’m learning as she grows that I need to listen to her. When she pulls out that side of her (that she adopted from me) where she carefully & logically explains her point, I have to respect her input. After all, if I don’t respect her educational wishes for high school, how will I get her to be passionate about University someday? I won’t be able to. So, I’m going to listen to her viewpoint & if she’s taken the time to present what she wants in a mature way, I will listen. I won’t agree every time, but I will listen. This is something I think we need to apply to everyone; if they’ve taken the time & effort to present a rational view, we should listen. This may help me get all three kids to adulthood with all of my hair intact. Maybe. Maybe.

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Day 14: A Year of Change

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The challenge was to post a photo from last year & discuss how I have changed. Normally, I’d say I’m the same girl I’ve always been, but that’s not true.

Last year, I felt life was hopeless. My daughter was mad at the world & I felt like a failure as a mom. My education wasn’t going well. My friendships were strained. My magazine folded & life without journalism felt bleak. I was healing from a breakup. I was freaking miserable.

But, I kept going. Sometimes, when life feels hopeless, all you’ve got are the little victories. I went to school today. I got my kid in therapy. I handed in my assignments. I went to placement & did well. Soon, those little victories become big ones. I finished school. I found a job. I did well at my job. I helped my child cope with anger & she’s doing well & doesn’t need counselling anymore. I became stronger & more self aware. All of these things helped me be happier.

Then there are the physical changes. I’m 15 lbs lighter. My arms are thinner. I wear a smaller size, and of course, the most obvious; my hair. My once jet black hair is now a warmer brown. The change brightened my face, made my eyes stand out & dare I say I feel like I’m prettier.

The year was hard but I’m grateful because once again I learned what I can accomplish if I try, which is a lot. So, I’m stronger, wiser & more at peace. These lessons I will take to my shiny new home, that I will move in to in 75 days.

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