Do you know what happens when I turn 14?

Unexpected turn.

All day I have been mentally writing a blog about being unforgettable.   My friends gave me a jar full of 43 things they love about me.  Today’s read:  You are Unforgettable.

So I played with that all day.

Tonight-we made a weight watchers dinner (go crustless Quiche for 4 points) and sat down at the family dinner table.  It’s been awhile.  My hubby was rounding the counter headed for the couch.  You could almost hear his shoes squeak at the quick stop he made when he saw the dinner plates sitting on the KITCHEN table instead of the coffee table.  I could hear his brain say, “WHAHA?” as he realized not only were we eating at the table–WE WERE ALL EATING THE SAME THING.  THE SAME THING WITH GREEN STUFF IN IT.

Dinner was forgettable.  We had a moment but quickly got over it by joining hands and singing, “Kum-by-yah,” Immediately followed by the WAVE with knocked over a full glass of milk.  We chatted and talked about school.  We covered who went to the office today and what we love about each other.  Mundane conversation.

And then unforgettable happened.   The girls had scattered for baths because we were on the countdown to American Ninja Warrior at 8p.  Colton stayed behind because, of course, he had yet to touch his Quiche.  Remember–GREEN THINGS.  AT 13 he’s probably only eaten green things 3 times.  No lie.  So it’s the 2 of us.  BAM! “Dad wants to know if we can spend another night with him.”  Right between the  eyes.  I am proud that I remain calm.  “He wants me to see what you say about Friday night…you know so we can relax and we can sleep in while he goes to work on Saturday.”

“No.”  Oh there is so much to say here.  So many reasons I could give.  So much untold.  “Why would I let you go there on Friday night to wake up to an empty house when I am  home and with you on Saturday morning? Plus, Friday night is the only night we have to relax and be together and I don’t want to give that up.”  I let the period be the period and didn’t elaborate.

Unforgettable question followed, “You do know what happens when I turn 14?  In 2 months…:

The air is sucked from the room.  I knew this day was coming.  I did but I don’t think I’ll ever forget the actual moment.  “Yes, I do know.”  my voice sounds calm.  I intentionally stay still.

“You don’t seem like you know…” he hedges.

“I know when you are 14 you get to decide who you want to live with.” I managed to do it with a single voice tremor  I sound calm though I feel anything but.  “There are things you don’t know.  Important things.  When you turn 14  I hope you are mature enough to make the right decision,”  calm.  Steady.  No panic.  “I hope part of you knows that this dinner at the table…this vegetable I am making you eat…this is me being a good parent,” he mutters that he never said I was an AWFUL parent.  “I can’t love you more than I do.  I believe I am a good mom.  Every decision I  make has you in mind. But…” oh god, oh god, oh god, “I won’t bribe you.  I won’t beg you.  I won’t promise you more electronic time.  I won’t let you do only the things you want to keep you here.  I will continue to be the best parent I can be and hope that is enough…” one small crack can be heard. My voice rises in emotion at the last sentence but I’ve held it together.  I’ve survived this conversation.  I get up from the table and make my way AWAY–away from that question.  That question that I’ve heard in my heart, in my mind for 9 years, “Do you know what happens when I turn 14?”

He’s upstairs.  Alone.  Watching TV.  I am here, downstairs, breathing in and out and trying to pretend my heart didn’t just break.  I am writing this blog about UNFORGETTABLE but it’s not the unforgettable I expected to be writing about.

“Do you know what happens when I turn 14?”  Obviously he knows and obviously he’s considering that there is a choice. That alone will forever leave me scared.

Yes, I know what happens when he turns 14.  And because I love him, because I am the best parent I know how to be, because I do my best to let them be who they are…I will have to let what happens when he 14 be what happens when he turns 14.  I  know that.  Mentally.  In my heart….

Unforgettable…that’s what this was.

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7 thoughts on “Do you know what happens when I turn 14?

    • It’s a huge weight but not one anyone’s asked him to carry. NOTHING has to change when he’s 14-in less than 2 months. This is a burden he’s put on himself. I am sad because in his mind he has to choose-I am also sad because if there is a good, strong chance that his choice won’t be what he think it will be. But I have to let him learn that lesson on his own.

      Sent from my iPhone

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