Observations by Key Monroe~~Home of Right Opinions, Cynical Viewpoints, and TMI in Hefty Doses
|E-mail: keymonroe [at] alltel [dot] net

March 21, 2005


I'm feelin' it. I'm back. I have survived the overnighter with 9 nine-year-olds, and I did so while battling a nasty upper respiratory infection. It won of course, and had me dragging ass to my fave Indian clinic mid-Saturday.

These nine-year-olds scare me. They already act all "preteeny" with their preppy clothes, rancid gossip and passionate hatred of anything Barbie. And as I thought about it, a rather obvious realization hit me.

My gawd, she's closer to 13 than I am from 18, the turning point being when she was five. Thus the vertigo. This sucks. I am going to be the mother of a teenager!

She's a good girl. I know everywhere she goes, everything she does, everyone she's with. This will change if she is truly a chip off the old block.

I was still a good girl, but my conservative upbringing boxed me into some ridiculous social guidelines. Therefore, my mother knew what I wanted her to know, and for that matter, what she wanted to hear.

One day, my mother - my too busy to sit down because I'm blessed with the Martha Stewart gene mother - sat down and watched an episode of Oprah. Oprah said that the reason we don't know what our children are doing is because we have closed ourselves off to them so that they cannot confide in us.

So my mother approached me, aged 17 me, and instructed me to tell her just one thing that she didn't know, something I'd done that I didn't think she could handle. There would be no negative repercussion. She just wanted me to share.


I really wasn't that bad. But I did like a good party, and although my (now remarried) mother is cool, the deacon's wife version who raised me was not. So when I was partying, she thought I was at the movies or bowling. What to tell her? Definitely not the stories with cops or boyfriends, but yet something shocking enough to take full advantage of the "no negative repercussion" promise.

"Okay Mom," I began. "Remember a few weeks ago when I went out to an early dinner and then a late movie with the girls?"


"Well, I was with the girls, but we took off for Lake Hartwell [45 mile trek, one-way]. Brandon's parents have a house there, but they were out of town. So we met him and his friends there for a night out on the boat." Her eyes bulged a bit, but she was still breathing, so I continued, deciding though to leave out any references to alcohol. "So, we took the boat out, anchored, and hung out for a while. The problem was getting back. Brandon couldn't get the motor to turn over, so we were out there a while." Meaning that out of desperation, we ended up taking turns peeing off of the end of the boat, but I left that out as well. "As it turns out, the boat was out of gas, so the guys ended up having to swim us back to shore, pulling the boat behind them. ...And that's why I barely made curfew that night...Mom? You okay?"

She was gray. I thought she was going to pass out. "Don't tell me any more!" And with that, she left the room.

I have since enjoyed telling her more stories of my surreptitious youth, but as it turns out, I was really only breaking her in for the whirlwind that is my brother. But then, he never even bothered to keep up appearances, the rogue.

So there I sat, on an outing with a bunch of Miss Priss pals, listening attentively as they schooled me on who likes who. (And as a side-note, they no longer sit in trees. Now you will find them sittin in a gutter, eatin peanut butter, kissin each other...)

I was very attentive, and now I wonder how long I will be privy to such information. Will we find the magic compromise, and will she have more sense in her head than I did?

I'm not the worrying type. But I have worried over that child since the day she was born, and I don't see it letting up.

posted by Key on 10:09 PM | Comments (5)

Well, I do believe you hit the nail on that head. I'm in the same boat. You just gave me shivers. Sweet One (age 12) left for the coast with her best friend and the best friend's family on Sunday...they should return on Wednesday. I love the parents and the best friend...it's just the 16 year old brother and his best friend I'm worried about...

Posted by: Christina at March 21, 2005 11:03 PM

You said it best Key!
"This will change if she is truly a chip off the old block!" I've just been through it with my only child. Sixteen! Humphhh!!!! A coupla of days ago she was two and I was changing dipers! I just gave the daughter permission to go on the pill. I'm just glad she doen't know what Mom and I were doing at here age!

Posted by: Ed at March 22, 2005 10:06 AM

Congrats on surviving...sorry to hear the flu beat you.

Girls are so difficult. And we tend to "shelter" out parents, especially mothers. We all did it. It sounds like ya'll have a great relationship. Oh, I'd worry. But I think as long as the door is open for communication you'll weather it all just fine.

Posted by: Tammi at March 22, 2005 10:08 AM

WOuld not have had the guts to go down that path with my mother. Unless I confessed that the Saturday she thought I was waterskiing I was really doing charity work at the Red Cross.

Posted by: Velociman at March 22, 2005 12:48 PM

GREAT story!

Posted by: TJ at March 22, 2005 04:11 PM
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