The Act of Figuring it Out

As dawn approached, our dog Charlie decided it would be the right time to start scratching at her kennel door to try and get my hubby to let her out. After a few tries at scratching she was told with authority that it was not time to get up, and thankfully she listened for at least an hour more. At that point she was let out to snuggle down in between our bodies to promptly fall asleep again. Our other dog Jorj (the calmer one) just found his comfy spot and fell back asleep to get a few more winks before the breakfast bell rang.

Our house is a mixture of different personalities all combined together to make sure I have a good sense of self control, patience and humbleness. Our days always start out with the dogs not making up their minds whether they want to sleep in longer or get up to go on a walk with their humans. If they chose to sleep through it, their actions don’t last long as we get ourselves ready for the morning routine. I love the morning walks, my hubby and I get a chance to talk with each other, hash out issues, and quietly walk along enjoying each other’s company. It is funny how different but the same we are. We both do things our own ways and want better communication. Now that we are both back to full time jobs the ability to converse with each other comes at the only times that are available: on our walks, before bed and on the weekends when we are not working on other projects. I don’t know about anyone else but to have an independent streak (me) mix with a “my way or the highway” (him) the conversations can get interesting. We have both mellowed over the years, and there are times when maybe we both should listen more and talk less, but when we look at our relationship we are stronger for the very reasons we are weak.

This summer has proven to me that teenagers are really just overgrown two year old’s. Not so much in the attitude category (though the force is strong with my two girls), but in the sleep, eat, and poop categories. I swear it feels like all my girls do is stay up all night, sleep all day, and if it requires anything healthy to eat they say they are not hungry and haven’t eaten for weeks because they just don’t need food. My middle child is seen on a rare occasion when she get up to use the restroom, and when she hones in on the bag of chips that just opened up. Funny she can survive not eating for days on in, but can masterfully walk around in the middle of the night gathering up a bowl of cereal and a root beer without waking anyone up. This is the same girl that rode 40 miles last year on a Saturday because she wanted to. In a years time she went from an active girl, to one that won’t go outside because it’s too hot and their may be a bit too much smoke in the air (granted I will give her that, the fires around out area have caused unhealthy air quality). Now before I jump to my own conclusions, or you do, I have been told by other parents and have seen it with the girl’s friends that sleeping during the day and eating junk food is what is the thing to do at this age. What a test of patience, and an act of strength to not force her out of her room to do what I consider normal things. It has been a hard lesson to learn that I cannot force my kids to my way of thinking, or make them act a certain way. I have to remember that I am still lucky that I am still a part of their conversations, though not all.

My oldest isn’t much different except that she now does get up at a reasonable time, though it is to get to work on time. She has a job Monday-Friday job that had made her realize that sleep is good. She is my analyzer though. She will analyze the socks off of anyone, and then make sure they know the ways in which they should do things (ok so mainly she does this to her younger brother, but she has put her dad in the analyzing target a few times too). She loves to be on her computer and has a new way of dressing again, that I really have to get used to. I often wonder over and over why the seasoned parents that have gone through the awkward teenage years didn’t band together to help us newbies figure out how to navigate these weird years. Then I realized they were probably just trying to survive just and I and my hubby are trying to now.

Then there is our youngest. I didn’t realize how hard it would be for the little guy. He has gone from being the baby of the family who had his sisters there to play with him, to the youngest of the family that is simply tolerated by one sister and mothered by the other sister. Don’t get me wrong, he can stand his own but even now he is realizing he has an opinion and likes to share it, and he knows that bugging his sisters gets him attention even if it’s not always the attention he craves. He is still fun loving and has no problem telling me he loves me, and I will take it for as long as I can. The boy knows how to work his magic though, stay quiet long enough about something, and the parents tend to forget about it. Don’t let the sisters know what you are staying quiet about and chances are they won’t remind the parents about what it is you are not reminding them about.

What is needed is an instruction manual that comes with each child that outlines what their personalities are, what hypes them up and what makes them upset. Parents don’t stand a chance without these books. Luckily we have wise ones that have gone before us, if we can get them to open up. We have the Bible that teaches us how to raise our kids, teaches us patience, and humility, but doesn’t hit on the specifics of actually raises the individuals that are living in your home. I guess that is what praying is for, and studying the Bible so that the example Christ gives us will help us survive the growing up years. There have been times were I really wasn’t sure if I was gonna make it through the day with my hubby and kids, but then I am blessed with a hug, or kind word, a day for reading and I know that we are all different but because of that we make each other stronger. There are no mistakes when it comes to who I love and live with. Until next time:

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.      Ephesians 2:10

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