Moms Columns & Blogs

Consequences...

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The tempest I felt brewing the last few weeks has broken wide open...  Imagine being marooned on a tropical island during the eye of the storm…frantically trying to assess the damage at midnight, one pitiful penlight and votive candle lighting your way…  

My temper has waxed and waned throughout the weekend…  It is hard to restrain myself…I feel like wringing Grace’s neck!  I mean, honestly, what were they thinking?  Wait a minute, I know the answer…they weren’t thinking at all!  Period!  No more than five minutes ahead, anyway…  On the odd occasion when they actually do think long enough to contemplate consequences, they immediately reject them as not applicable...  

I cannot help but feel extremely jumbled and confused…  I’ve been royally pissed, highly embarrassed, and greatly relieved in recurring order, finally settling into dogged resignation.  By no stretch of the imagination am I equipped to deal with this, but whether I’m ready or not, it’s right here, right now…  Grace is on lockdown, so it’s been calm, relatively speaking; it’s hard to get in trouble when you are attached to your mom’s hip like a toddler…  

Prying the truth out of her has been both physically grueling and mentally exhausting.  I had to insist that she quit rehashing it with anyone who called; the gossipmongers have been working overtime.  Not only was she getting upset after every conversation, she was inadvertently fanning the flames of the wildfire rumor mill.  We confiscated her cell phone as part of the initial phase of punishment...after enduring another meltdown and screaming protest, turning that thing off helped soothe my frayed nerves a bit…  

I wracked my brain…how can I make my point without triggering her fight or flight response?  I finally decided that a practical demonstration was called for, so I grabbed an unopened Deer Park bottle and a shot glass.  

“Do you know how many mixed drinks can be made from a water bottle full of vodka?’  

“No, mom, I never thought about it.”  

“Look, there’s no need to get a ‘tude with me; I’m just trying to make sure you fully understand how much (alcohol) is involved.  I’m not trying to make you feel stupid.”  

I asked her to count out the number of ‘shots’ with me as I poured them…   I could literally see the wheels start turning…    

I know Grace already gets it; her friend could have easily died.  She learned that lesson Friday night.  But now there is a visual…what appeared to be very little was really quite a lot.  As crazy as it seems, the recognition of the different impact from the same volume of liquid…these kids are used to chugging water bottles, no problem…when they contain water.  It makes me wonder, how many other teens are ignorant in this way?  Obviously, it goes without saying that they shouldn’t be drinking.  And yet, despite constantly checking up on my child, sans one hour, this happened.    

This chain of events has exposed another flaw in my thinking.  I have been kidding myself, believing that I could prevent another bad thing from happening through hyper-vigilance, watching everyone like a hawk.  I have gleaned a new truth this weekend…  No matter how much effort I expend, ultimately, I cannot save anyone from themselves…  

Original blog posts have been re-posted under the month of March, identified as Archive-Part 1, etc.  Wishing you hope…TG 

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

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