This morning as I Lyft'd (not a word; def made that word up but it fits soooo moving along) ... My driver struck up conversation with me. The usual "U like the area... what do you think about it? ... It is changing so fast" My white driver referencing gentrification always makes me think does he really know whats going on... He is apart of the THEM who wants US out... I digress... ok back to the topic...
As we arrived to Julian's school, I ask him a couple questions to remind him of his daily affirmations. The life I speak into my babies. It is a very important part of my morning. "Are you going to make good choices today? Rushing, I get a yes. "Are you going to be a strong leader today?" Annoyingly I get a second Yes. "Are you going to show yourself respect by respecting others today?" Straight face he answers: Yes. His tone says "I have had enough Mom let me go." I had swooped him in my arms and help him hostage for those yes. and a few kisses lol. I watch as he runs to the building. He always moves slowly so he can stop to say hello to his friends along the way even tho I tell him to go straight to class so he will not be late. I digress again. He makes it safely inside.
As I get back into the car, my driver says " I have never heard that before" Not realizing what he is speaking about I give him a "what chu talkin bout Willis look" (God that was a great show). He proceeds to admire my parenting. I thank him. As the car ride progresses he asks, "Who taught you how to be a parent"... I chuckled. "AIN'T NO MANUAL FOR THIS HERE! I AM WINGING IT BRO!" He laughed at my prompt response. I proceeded to tell him about becoming mother at 16 and how I really am just realizing how hard this parenting thing is. "Its 3 of them and One of Me... who da hell told me to sign up for this!" ** Please note how I am bat shit crazy because I want more, With a husband preferably twins 'insert Dab here'** Probably, ask myself this question once a damn day. If I get a phone call home from a teacher, twice in one day. Maybe 3 times....
As our conversation progressed and I mentioned how hard it is being a mom to a teenager. You know that does teen things. She knows everything. She steals my clothes. She talks back. She rather sleep all day and not do a single chore. Oh you guys this baby once told me "Just because it is not done ur way, does not mean it aint done"... She probably regretted that statement when she picked herself up off the floor. But today in this conversation, I reflected on myself as a teen and I reflected on a situation with close family members.
On Feb. 28, 2017, a 14 year old relative went missing. She was missing until March 4, 2017. During the time she was gone, I imagined everything under the sun. From Sex trafficking to homicide. I shared every flyer. I prayed. I was afraid for her. By the grace of God, she was returned home in one piece. I'm sure she is hurting. I'm sure she is afraid. I am sure her view of the world has changed now that she has had a taste of what every parent tries to protect their child from. I pray for her now as I would hope someone would pray for my 14 year old if she ever finds herself in that position.
I used this as a teaching tool. I went to my daughter. The rules that I have in place are not because I want to ruin ur life. The rules that are in place are because I want you to have your life. I want you to be able to experience a full life. I want you to remain as innocent as you possibly can for as long as you possibly can. I recently went thru my 14 year old's cell phone. The things I found were not a big deal. But to me they were enough for me to spazz over. Small simple rules were broken but to me small rule breaking leads to larger rule breaker so lets just cut the head off now and stay focused.
Idk the details on what happened that lead to my relative being missing. I just know the rules were broken somewhere in there. Not to blame her, but to say, rules are in place for protection. Period. Guidelines are in place for protection. As a parent, not even just in being a parent, as a person, a human, you protect what you value. If it is important to you, you will protect it at all costs and by any measure.
Life is so hard, Living a life when it is truly you VS the World is even harder! Lord these babies just do not know. When everyone has a motive and everyone wants something from you, and no one genuinely loves you for who you are. Only based on what you can give or do for them is HELL. Literally, hard as hell. I have not experienced hell but I am almost sure that is close to it.
But one day, I hope my babies grow to see that EVERYTHING, every decision, every step, every move I have made up until this point has been to protect them. I have seen this world, I have experienced how it can eat u up if you allow it, and I will not give them to the streets. That is why I am hard on them, that is why I push them to be the best version of themselves. I value them. This world, does not and will not.