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It's complicated...

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Fear…  An arrangement of four little letters hardly capable of conveying the power contained within the word… 

Try as we may to keep fear at bay, it still sneaks in on cat feet, quietly invading our space while we contemplate other matters, oblivious to the invasion underway…  Suddenly it seems we are frozen in place, the chilly fingers squeezing our heart announcing its arrival…  Our decisions become tarred with anxiety and trepidation; every thought and consideration is colored by waking nightmares of a repeat experience…

This makes it nearly impossible for us to agree, much less decide on certain things.  I really hate it when John and I are at odds, especially when it involves one of the kids…

Grace left this morning on a whirlwind road trip with her boyfriend AJ; they are heading to a small town near the NC / VA border for his annual family reunion.  Against her daddy’s wishes.  John has many concerns, all beginning and ending with the same simple fact: there is a teenage boy involved.  Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your perspective) for Beth and Grace, their daddy remembers all too well his line of thinking from that period in his life…  He doesn’t like it.  At all.  Most of the time, he chooses to ignore those memories; however, the prospect of an overnight outing has dredged up every single one and then some…

I met with AJ’s mother last week; she assured me of their separate accommodations and adult supervision.  I have numerous telephone numbers and a specific itinerary of their plans. 

My worries center less on their hormones and more on the actual traveling involved.  AJ’s parents and sister drove up ahead of them last night because Grace and AJ were working a closing shift.  I hope this bright October morning will see less traffic than normal; the combination of highway speeds, a young, relatively inexperienced male driver, a sports car, a lengthy ride, and my daughter in the passenger seat is making me break out in a cold sweat…  I know too many statistics for my own good, one being that 6,000 teenagers die each year in car accidents…

So why did I stand up against John?   Why did I argue and give the final okay?

It’s complicated…

We have to trust Grace until she gives us a reason not to.  I know more than I probably should, or would, had our lives not changed; I walk a tightrope between no-holds barred honesty from her and reasonable reactions/allowances from me.  She needs to feel like a typical teen, able to go off on a fun adventure without our smothering and hovering stealing the joy found within the temporary escape.  Brian made the mistake, not Grace...  We should not assume AJ will be less than a gentleman…or drive like a wannabe NASCAR racer…or that our worst nightmare will…  I cannot begin to say it…

Once we start giving in, if we allow fear to rule us, it will destroy all that remains…  We must start learning to let them go…  We have to trust and believe it will all be just fine…at least for this time…  The alternative I refuse to contemplate…

Wishing you sunshine and always, hope…tg

Tammy will update her blog on Mondays and Thursdays.  -- Jen, site administrator  

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