The new plan to “spend every waking moment” with the teenagers was in full force again today. I would like to know if all the naysayers and parenting critics out there have ever actually spent every waking moment with their teenage children for any length of time. It’s quite easy for the casual observer to say that a parent should be there all the time to supervise, but it is a different matter entirely to put this into practice. Essentially, we have been with our children at all times. They are not allowed to leave the house without a parent. They are not permitted to engage in any activities that do not involve family participation. They are going just a bit stir crazy.
It’s entirely possible that we have gone overboard with the togetherness.
Overboard or not, we spent another day all together. We set out on a fresh shopping trip to our favorite upscale boutique shopping center this afternoon, and this time we brought friends. Each of the girls had a friend of their choosing with them. Despite the major changes, things finally seem to be normalizing. They don’t like the loss of freedom, but at the same time, they are adjusting to the new format. They will be seniors in high school this year, so it’s not like we can hold them hostage forever, but after trusting the wrong adults with the care of our children, we are being much more cautious. In a quite surprising turn of events, the girls have made the major decision to willingly cut ties to all of the bad influences in their lives (something that is not always easy to do, especially when dealing with extended family), and they have accepted their responsibility in any mistakes they have made. It has been a very valuable lesson in life for everyone involved.
The simple truth is…no one is immune to bad judgment or making mistakes. My husband and I made grave errors in judgment in trusting people, and the girls made errors in judgment in their decision making. We have all learned from those mistakes and are emerging as a stronger family because of it. And that’s what life is all about…learning and growing. The minute we stop growing is the day we stop living. And I have a whole lot of life left in me. And my kids haven’t even gotten started yet. They are going to be just fine…
Until the next time…I’ll be looking forward to a beautiful Sunday with the family!