This blog entry is dedicated to my son Henry. He graduates from high school in a few weeks – Hooray for him! He’s the one with wild auburn hair in the photo you see above. Having my son reach the “advanced” age of 18 has made me a bit introspective, so please bear with me today if I ramble and carry on…
I am so proud of my son. From an early age, Henry viewed school as mainly boring and a bit ridiculous; in his opinion, school was one of those silly things that adults force kids to do. So now that he’s graduating on time and with decent grades and it is a big deal to me.
Henry is smart as a whip and funny and kind. He also LOVES to test every rule and push against anything he disagrees with. That’s the kind of skill that provokes strong reactions from people and really irritates most teachers. So you can probably understand why school would be a challenge! BTW, I cannot imagine where Henry gets that provocative part from! <vbgrin>
Dare I admit that I have spent an inordinate amount of time stumbling around in the dark as a parent?? Doesn’t Rule #1 in the parent handbook say something about always acting like you know exactly what you’re doing??! Hah! Actually I threw my copy of the parent handbook away a LONG time ago – none of the stuff in there ever worked with my son – or my youngest daughter! Consequently, I do a lot of trial and error parenting – let’s try this… no wait – that made it worse, how about that… oh God, what do I do now??
Well, Henry made it to age 18 with body, heart and soul reasonably intact, despite my clueless parenting. That’s something to celebrate. He has turned out to be an amazing guy. Don’t get me wrong, Henry is a teenager and it is all I can do some days not to throttle him. On days when he is dismissing everything I say and acting like a total know-it-all, I have trouble seeing anything but red. I cannot imagine where Henry gets that know-it-all trait from! <vbgrin>
There is a reason that chimps and lions and many other mammal species kick their young out of the family right after they reach puberty. It’s because when kids hit puberty, they temporarily turn into insufferable twits around their parents. It happened to me. And now my karma is that my kids treat me like I use to treat my parents! Some days my teens act like I am a complete idiot. But the great thing about being my age is knowing that these obnoxious teenage tendencies will pass. I just have to be patient; I’ll be smart and cool again in 5-10 years. 🙂
My son is graduating in 3 weeks! Next thing you know, he’ll be working and settling down; getting married and raising his own kids. Unbelievable. The strange thing about being a parent is that I can close my eyes and still see him as a newborn and the image of him as a baby is just as clear as if I birthed him 2 days ago. But then I open my eyes and see this tall 18 year old guy in front of me. He’s amazingly smart, funny & caring. And I am so proud to have him in my tribe.
Congratulations Henry – you did it!
I love you to the moon and back.