Thursday, August 7, 2014

Parenting a Teenager- Is there an app for that??

My oldest son turned 15 in June.  I blinked and he was no longer my "talk a mile a minute" 7 year old.  The kid who asked a million questions per day was no longer saying much of anything.  I was now the one asking a million questions, just trying to get an answer that involved more than one syllable.  But, through all of the moods, slammed doors, exasperated sighs (because Eric and I obviously don't understand him), I've always seen my son in there.  My funny, silly, thoughtful, loyal, kind Aidan.  That has never changed.
Aidan has always made friends easily.  When he was three he met his first best friend, Jewel, at preschool.  Jewel wouldn't talk to anyone there. Anyone, except Aidan.  At dinner every night, we heard about Jewel and how much Aidan loved her and wanted to help her "not be so shy."  They were best friends for a long time.  He could be himself with Jewel and she could be herself too. You can see that in all the pictures of them together through their growing up years.
  Over the years, Jewel came out of her shell and Aidan supported her every step of the way.  Now that they are teenagers, they aren't close like they used to be.  That's OK, because they will always remember their first best friend.

Aidan's current best friend has been his best friend for 5 years.  Their friendship even lasted through nearly two years of Aidan living in California and Noah living in Missouri.  These two boys are just the right amount of crazy and I love them.
I think the hardest part of Aidan growing up and becoming his own person is knowing when to let him handle things his own way.  Because, I am always right, you see.  I know what is best for him.  I want to tell him exactly what to do to keep his school stuff organized, what he should eat and drink (it's NOT Dr. Pepper and Sour Patch Kids, by the way), how he should handle kids who are rude or mean to him.  It's an instinct for mothers.  I know I've overstepped a couple of times and Aidan has not been happy with me for doing so.  I try to explain to him that I can't help it when Mama Bear comes out.  "You need to put Mama Bear away," he says, " I can handle it."  So, I'm trying.  I know if he needs us, he will ask.
So, I guess I don't really need an app.  I just need patience and to trust that he will know what to do and how to handle it.  When he says, "Girl, I got this,"  I need to listen to him.

Except when we are driving.  When we are driving, I get to tell him what to do.