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  Sometimes I can’t relate. I just don’t get it. Which actually translates to “I just don’t get them”. Where “them” equals my daughters. And that leaves my girls either rolling their eyes at their dinosaur mom, huffing “mo-om” (the 2 syllable version of the three letter word), or getting royally frustrated with me being so royally clueless. That’s fairly normal when worlds collide. It’s the generational divide. The line of all lines of all time. ** It's a fairly fine line. It looks like this: ––––––––––––––––––––– But not really. Not at all. I just hate when I cross it. When…
I am a firm believer in this one rule: As the parent, I make the decisions. Period.   But I also firmly believe in another rule: As the parent, I encourage – and even allow – my children to make the decisions. End of sentence. ** There is no conflict of interest here. I am not giving mixed signals. I am merely allowing a certain amount of flexibility, a certain amount of consideration to the life-or-death impact of the resolution, a certain amount of reflection as to how much influence the rule maker has (or will gain). Does it matter?…
  Before the fireworks last night, the Boston Pops (by way of a link my younger daughter found) played The 1812 Overture. Tchaikovsky. Oboe. Strings. Piccolos. French Horns. Double basses. Church bells. Cannons. As I often become, I was soon lost in the music. Totally. My body moves without my knowing. I begin conducting. My left hand starts fingering the bass part that I once played. When I opened my eyes again, Keith Lockhart was cuing the piccolos. I needed a moment to sync distant past with recent past with present. In the distant past, I was a classical bassist.…
Confession: I love being a parent. I am challenged personally. Daily. Sometimes, even minute-to-minute. And I always strive to do my job better today than yesterday. The learning curve is tremendous. The best part? I am rewarded frequently. I have cartons of handscrawled pictures and paintings, sculptures, precious rocks, jewelry of all styles, books, carefully selected logo-ed tee shirts, personalized poetry, and oh so many cards. I have memories of tearful moments of spontaneous thank yous and heartfelt apologies and …. hugs. Many, many, many hugs. And quite a few kisses - from toddler wet smooches to teen air pecks.…
(Read on. Or, just skip to the end of the post…) Before I became a parent, I dreamed that I would one day launch Parents without Rules (PwR), the sister group of Doctors without Borders. Sort of. I was experiencing a classic case of I-will-not-parent-as-I-was-parented. And then I actually became a parent. ”Ha,” said the universe. “Ha ha. Ha.” I thought that role-modeling – with a healthy dollop of discussion and guidance – would help my children navigate through life. I thought I wouldn’t need any hard-and-fast rules with consequences attached to them. I thought wrong. My children, as it turns out, have…
Time-out! There comes a moment … … when a parent simply cannot control and should no longer try to reason or negotiate with a child who is acting out or tantrumming. … when a parent must defuse an increasingly challenging and rapidly escalating situation. … when a parent must do something sane before he/she turns into the screaming, tantrumming parent, rivaling the utter frustration, tears, and screams of the child. … when a parent simply must be the parent. The role model. The teacher. The guru. The safety net. ** Every child acts out – it’s what they do. Children…
Here’s my theory: If you want your kids to eat more veggies, sometimes it’s easier to chop them up into tiny bits and throw them into the sauce. And if you want your kids to devour math, toss numerical questions into general conversations – bite sized pieces that don’t look like chunks of dreaded broccoli. So we were mixing banter and basic math practice at lunch this afternoon. The conversation between myself, my friend and a trio of mixed-aged teens fluidly combined dinner plans with math questions. While planning a fondue night and what we would dip in the batter,…
I am a single mother of two teen daughters. I am an entrepreneur. I am neurodiverse – that's not the same as being an entrepreneur, but the correlation's pretty strong. And I have a life that is non-stop chaotic. Today’s confession: I get stressed out. As in moody, easily frustrated, not exactly patient, more silent, quicker to anger … Trust me. It’s a long list. But I believe this qualifies me as human. What I’ve learned in my relationships with my family is not to hide my stress, not to plaster on the happy smile and hope that no one…
My younger daughter is at that age. Though every age is “that age”, this particular “that age” refers to the mid teens. She is usually up to her eyeballs in the demanding and endless academic work of a high school junior on the college track. This academic focus is then mixed with the emotional and hormonal life that every teen on the face of this earth experiences. In spades. And she is amazing. My older daughter is at that age. She is now a college freshman and lives 5 hours away from home having spent her first semester abroad. She…
Today is my mom’s birthday. And here’s a little-known fact about my mom: If you want her to giggle, buy her colorful balloons. Lots and lots of them. With helium. And colorful ribbons that hang to the floor. Tulips make my mom smile. But balloons make her giggle. And If there is anything as memorable than listening to your child giggle with glee, it’s hearing your mom giggle with delight. I talked with my sister last week - birthday balloons? Shouldn’t we wait for the next ‘significant’ birthday? (You know – the ones that end in multiples of 5 after…
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