Still Sick Little One

Husband had to take Little One to the doctor yesterday.  She got her nasty, awful cough Saturday night, and it was getting worse.  She has a sinus infection, so she was out of school yesterday, and I convinced her to stay home today.

She really felt awful.  Last night, as I was relaxing in the recliner, she tried to climb in and sit with me.  She is 15, and almost my height…and I’m 5” 6 1/2”.  I suggested we sit on the couch together, and after moving Fluffy White Dog twice (he was not impressed with me), I was able to hold her while she cuddled next to me feeling miserable.  Yep, I loved feeling needed!

Husband thought it was funny, so he took a couple of Snap Chat videos of it, but Little One didn’t think he was funny, so she hid under the blanket.  After she went to bed she texted me (teenagers!) and asked me to come upstairs…she wanted me to lay on her bed until she fell asleep.  Much as I would have loved to do that, neither of the dogs were open to me laying on the bed next to her, and I was really tired, and needed to be able to get up for work.  So I laid down, with a dog on my head, for a while, so she could get comfortable.

As Husband put it, if I could have, I would have spent 3 hours laying in her bed, or cuddling her on the couch.  I don’t get many requests to hold my girls anymore, and it’s usually when they are sick that they ask.  It can be tricky figuring out how to best be the Mom of a high school and a college student, but it is never hard to figure out how to love, support, and hug them when needed.

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Sick Little One

My Little One is sick.  A cold, making her stuffy, sore throat probably from her nose draining, and she feels worn out.  This is a peppy teenager, very energetic, so when she just wants to lay on the couch with a blanket you know she feels lousy.

Of course she wouldn’t stay home from school yesterday, and today she has basketball games to cheer.  I’m giving her Dayquil, which is about all I can do from work with her at school.  She also doesn’t want to miss math class.  I give her points for not wanting to miss class or cheering the games.

After she went to bed last night she texted me (I was downstairs) and asked me to come up to her room, which I did.  She wanted to be hugged, and she wanted me to lay on the bed next to her for a few minutes.  This is a rarity, so I gladly hugged and kept her company.  I was actually a bit sad when she told me goodnight and gave me a kiss on the check, to let me know I could leave the room.

Both of the girls loved to cuddle when they were little, but of course grew out of it as they got older.  I’m only called Mommy now when they are sick, need help, or need money.  I understand, and actually I’d probably feel weird if they called me Mommy at a school event because that isn’t who they are.

So, even though I dislike Little One is sick, I admit it is nice to be needed, and for her to want hugs, and to want Mommy to take care of her.  By the end of the week she’ll be fine, and bouncing off the walls, and ready to go conquer the world.  And for me to drive her around to conquer the world!

Enjoying My Little One

I had a 3 day weekend, which was great.  What was even better was how much time I got to spend with Little One.  She is at that moody, sometimes unpredictable teenage girl stage (only moody with Husband and me, of course), so I’m never sure what to expect.  I know she’ll come out of it, but she started two years earlier than Oldest One…does that mean she’ll get out of it sooner?

Friday I went right from work to watch her cheer at first a Varsity girls basketball game, and then at the Varsity boys basketball game.  Fun, but exhausting.  I love to watch her cheer; she completely lights up and you can hear her loud voice over any yelling crowd.  Then we got to eat dinner at 10p at night while watching TV together.  All in all a very good day.

Saturday I took her shopping.  Again, I never know what to expect, but we had a lot of fun together.  She needed some new tops, some yoga pants for cheer practice, and some jeans.  We went to four places, and we stopped for ice cream.  We chatted, we were silly, and we just had a great time being together.  She even called her big sister to tell her how much fun she had.  I love the times when we are just together and bonding, so Saturday was an awesome day.

My Little One is growing way too fast.  I knew she would, but it was easier watching this happen with Oldest One, because Little One was still little.  Now I know this is it, and once she leaves for college my babies aren’t babies anymore.  They will still need Husband and me, and they will still will want to come home, but they are on the path to their lives.  It’s good, because that is what you hope to raise your kids to do, become independent adults.  But it’s staring me in the face, and as I’ve said before, I’m so not ready.  I doubt in three and a half years I’ll be ready.

So I actually try to enjoy the moodiness, the eye rolls, and the impatience with parents who aren’t too bright.  Because it will be gone all too soon, and although it is nice when they realize you do know things, it also means they are away at college and need advice.  I try to embrace her messiness (and she is one incredibly messy kid; I don’t know how she does it!) as much as I embrace her silliness.  I’m just trying to enjoy it all, because by tomorrow I’ll be driving her to college.  Which, again, is a good thing.  But I’m just not going to be ready for this, ever.

The Same, But Different

People often tell me how much my girls look like each other.  Or have the same mannerisms, or even personality.  When Little One went from contacts to glasses, at school the next day she heard from everyone how much she looked like her big sister.  People who know Little One first will tell Oldest One how much she looks like her little sister when they meet her.  I know the girls don’t mind when people say that, so I always smile, and say they do resemble each other/have the same smile/wave the same way.  And they do.  But, they don’t.

It’s obvious they are related, but as their Mom I see the differences.  I really don’t think they look alike, even though they do.  I see them with totally different personalities, even though they have a lot of the same quirks.  I’m sure it is because I’m their Mom that I see all the differences, and that I want to celebrate their differences, even as I think it is great people see them as so similar.

As the Mom, I’ve learned that it’s important I do see their differences.  The other day Little One had her friend over, and they were watching TV in the family room with me.  They were watching Sponge Bob, and the commercials were all toys for younger kids, so I make a joke about the age of the viewer being targeted and her age.  Oldest One would have come back with some smart remark, and on we would go trying to up each other with remarks, and laughing.  Little One got mad right away, turned off the TV, and took her friend upstairs.

I’ve always tried to be very fair with the girls, and make sure I meet their needs in the best way for them, and not their sister.  But no matter how hard I try, it doesn’t always work.  And, as I saw the other day, even how I joke with them needs to be different.  I don’t see that as a bad thing, just something I need to be mindful of.  I want my girls to grow up to be strong woman who believe in themselves and their capabilities.  I don’t want to ever make one feel inferior to the other, or that they have to be each other.

Yesterday I let Little One pick the movie (one of the too many Hallmark Holiday movies we’ve got on the DVR) and we had a great time watching the movie, getting mad at the mean character, and cheering for the main character.  We even made plans to do hot chocolate one night this week.  Oldest One would not have liked the movie, been bored, and started on her phone.  She would have been completely on board for the hot chocolate.  Different kids, different likes.

I’m glad the girls don’t mind other people seeing how alike they look and act.  I’m glad they are close enough that they even point it out to others.  I just need to remember, and embrace, their differences, so that they feel understood and loved for what makes them special as individuals.

Parent Friends…or Not?

Yes, today will be a rant, and maybe even a whine.  But this has been on my mind all week (remember, I am stuck in a recliner all day), and I decided all of you would just Love to let me get it all out, so I quite thinking about it, and can get on with life.  Or at least reading all of your wonderful blogs that keep me going and sane right now.  Okay, here we go…

Last week I was sick, and couldn’t make the football game. I loathe when that happens because I hate to miss seeing Little One cheer.  But, with the way seating happened, all I would have seen were people’s rear ends, which while some would have been nice to gaze at, would have irritated me because they would have blocked the cheerleaders.

There is a group of us that sit together at the games. Husband and I usually arrive early, and then try to make sure there is room for the others.  Now, we don’t see these parents outside of school events, but we all chat, and we see each other through football and basketball season, so we are together a lot.  At the games we chat, we cheer for our kids, and we have a good time.

Husband went by himself to the game. Little One would have been really upset without a parent showing up, and he loves to watch the kids play football.  After all this time we know most of the kids who play.  He had his folding chair, and when he arrived, no one had saved him a place.  And no one offered to move to make room for him.  And he barely got a hello.  Everyone had to move shortly after this to the parking lot behind a chain link fence, and again no one in the group made any effort to include him.  He chatted with other people during the game, but he didn’t feel part of it all like he usually does.

When he got home and told me this it really peeved me. One of the Moms knew I was sick and couldn’t make the game.  I would have saved a place for her husband, and made sure Husband knew he was flying solo and to chat with him.  What we got was the opposite, which besides getting me mad, also made me question the friendships.  Which has made it difficult this past week to interact with the Mom I text with a lot.

What do these parent friendships, where we sit together weekly at games for our kids, chat, and get to know each other really mean? I frequently bring their kids to my house after school when their parents are at work, and take them to the game or get them to the school to ride the van to the game.  I’ve had a parent bring Little One home a couple of times when I’ve had a doctor’s appointment.  I know we don’t have life long bonds going here, but I thought there was a definite group where we sat together, and looked forward to being together weekly.  Perhaps I was wrong.

I’m not going to say anything to any of them tomorrow, because it would just cause unnecessary drama. And it wouldn’t make a difference; I can see the blank looks I’d get for asking why they didn’t make a place for him at the last game.  And, it also feels wrong to me to bring it up.  But I will be seeing everyone in a different way, and interacting with them differently.  I can’t help it.  They’ll put it down to my not feeling well, and being in pain.  Because we see what we want to see.  And right now, I see people who really aren’t friends.

I Don’t Want Them to Cry

Dating.   Relationship.  Boyfriend.  All words as a parent I’m just not that fond of.  And luckily haven’t really had to deal with.  I’ve seen Oldest One’s friends go through relationships and angst, and I’ve even hugged some as they cried because the boy didn’t want to be with them anymore.  Oldest One had a couple of boys hurt her feelings, but she didn’t really date.  Little One has already had a boy make her cry.  I know it is a part of life, but I hate to see my girls cry, especially over a boy who just isn’t worth it.  Yes, that is so parent talk to say that.

Last night I stayed up late to chat with Oldest One. We talked about grades, and her roommate, and an upcoming sorority event she is really excited about.  And then she mentioned B.  It’s not the first time I’ve heard about him, but I wasn’t too excited to hear he was back, because from a parental view he is nothing but bad news.

She met B along with a bunch of other kids in the dorm when school started. She thought he was cute, and he seemed to like her.  Then he started to spend time with another girl in the dorm, G.  But G said she wasn’t spending time with him, he said he wasn’t spending time with her, but yet there they were together.  And it seemed they were, from what she heard from others in the dorm, losing their clothes when they were together.  It happens.  Then it turned out B had a girlfriend back home.  Quite the player, at least in my mind.

So Oldest One and I talked about it, after she quit talking to him. We talked about how it was better to find all this out about him early, and about how she wanted someone who would treat her a lot better than that.  Someone who would respect her, and wouldn’t lie about things.  You know, someone decent.  Because there was nothing I heard about this kid that was good.  He’s young, he can do what he wants and say what he wants, just not with my daughter.

But last night she said they are talking, and there were circumstances she didn’t know about. She of course didn’t go into those circumstances with me.  I asked her why she would want to consider being with someone who lied and didn’t respect her, and she went back to these circumstances.  Apparently these circumstances absolve him of all lies and rude behavior.  I said if she wanted to be friends that’s great, be friends with the world.  But don’t date someone who doesn’t respect you and who isn’t nice to you.  I asked her what she would say to someone telling her all of this.  Apparently I overstepped my parental bounds at that point because she got irritated with me and cut that conversation off.  But not before telling me he might be one of our Thanksgiving guests.  Yippee.

I have a lot more I’d like to say to her, but I know I have to let her get hurt if she decides to date him. It’s not like I didn’t have a B in college, I did, and I’m pretty sure he was worse than this guy.  And a whole lot older.  But I remember how much it hurt, and I wasn’t even in love with my B.  But I sure liked him a whole lot, and I was willing to overlook a lot of things I shouldn’t have.  It was a good learning experience, and I know I have to let her have her learning experiences with relationships.

I just don’t want to see her hurt, and upset, and crying. I don’t care that it’s a part of life and growing up and figuring out who you are and what you want in a person.  I want to keep my daughters from getting hurt, which is impossible.  So I’ll do my best, instead, to be there when I’m needed.  I’ll listen when she needs me to, and try to not criticize and put B down.  When things don’t work out, I’ll support her, and send a lot of chocolate.  Most of all, I’ll continue to love her unconditionally.

Halloween Mishaps

It’s Halloween! I still have no idea what Little One is doing, but Husband took her to Goodwill, and she has everything she needs to be a Hippie.  With her long, straight, brown hair and what they bought she will look great!

I started thinking (again!) about other Halloweens, and since Oldest One isn’t here, about her specifically. And I realized that Halloween was a holiday in which she twice managed to be gimpy for.  I think there was a third, but right now I can’t remember it.  I’ll blame that on medication and not age!

When Oldest One was in 2nd grade a classmate’s Mom decided to have a party for her child’s birthday on Halloween, after school, ending in time for the kids to go trick or treating. Oldest One’s best friend’s Mom, CM, offered to take her.  While at the party Oldest One took a turn on the trampoline, and her ankle got twisted.  Just in time to be wandering the neighborhood asking for candy.  She was in tears figuring she would miss it all.  Since Oldest One was small for her age, I pulled out the umbrella stroller, said she could sit in that, and away we went.

CM was very helpful as we went through the neighborhood, and held Little One’s hand as we crossed streets so I could push the stroller. At one point I was lowering the stroller into the street from a rounded curb.  I guess someone thought it would be funny to throw a bunch of ball bearings right there to see how many people they could get that night.  I started to push the stroller into the street and both the stroller and I were tripped up by the ball bearings, and Down We Went!  Seriously, I was on my back in the street, and the stroller had landed so Oldest One was on her back, with her legs up.  I got myself up, got Oldest One up, and we decided to call it a night.

Then, in her junior year of high school, oldest one hurt her knee at cheer. She came out of a tumbling pass in the wrong place, and the bottom of her feet squarely hit the mirrored back wall.  Husband had to go out to the carpool’s car and carry Oldest One in.  Her knee swelled up to about three times its normal size; she had a bone bruise and she sprained it, but luckily nothing requiring surgery.  She was on crutches for almost two months.  Halloween came right after this, so she couldn’t go out.  Her friends all piled in the house around 7p, spent time with her, then left with her bag.  They came back later that night with a bag full of candy for her.  I think someone took a picture of her looking pathetic on the couch with crutches, and then showed it at the door with her bag when asking for candy for her.

Oldest One also did great getting sick at Christmas, but I won’t go into that now. Bad as it all seemed at the time, these are now Oldest One stories we bring up and laugh about from time to time.  I Love My Family!