Being an Adult
I’ve always thought adulting is a bit of a stupid term, but at the same time I feel it exactly describes what I’m trying to do at the moment. I wish there was a rule book or a guide or a how to explanation of what I’m supposed to do and when. It would make things so much easier!
Being a parent is hard. I try so hard to get the balance right. I want to be interested without being pushy, a friend but still the parent. I want them to be able to talk to me about anything and everything, and sometimes, I think I am nailing it. Other times, not so much. I hate getting things wrong and yet so much of the time I seem to put my foot in it, even when I try my best. Take last week for example. I’ve been banging on for weeks both before and after lockdown was eased about the amount my eldest was going out. I know he’s a teenager with a social life, but sometimes it feels like he just comes home for the food, a shower and to sleep. He’s not home much more than that. I try to balance it out and remind myself that at his age I was married and he was nearly with us, and that he works hard so should go out when he wants to, but recently it’s just wound me up a little bit. Given that he isn’t even making it home by his curfew on weeknights, it’s making me a little shorter of patience.
We’ve tried to talk, I’ve hoped he will make a better decision occasionally if I try to encourage him, but he hasn’t and it makes me feel worse. Even last weekend he said he’d go out on Sunday in the day and come home for the evening. I was really touched that he was making the effort, but by the evening his plans had changed and off out he went again. I was surprised at how disappointed I was.
Eventually something sunk in and one evening he decided to stay in. Even after he got back from work, I expected him to ask to go out but for a change, he didn’t. You’d think I’d be pleased, as I had finally got what I wanted and yet, instead of being happy it just made me feel grumpy. I felt like I was stopping him from going out. It seemed that there wasn’t a good enough reason for him to be home, because we weren’t doing anything special and his Dad was working late. It is so hard to get things right, and then I just seem to upset my son, rather than just accept that what he is doing. Even my daughter told me to be careful I didn’t upset him, and when you hear it from one of the other kids, you know you’re making a mistake.
I don’t want to push him away but I feel like I seem to do it all the time. I just want to get things right, to encourage him, and to remind him, rather than letting things slide, but instead, it’s like I just seem to make him feel bad, and then of course he wants to go out rather than listen to me. I don’t blame him, I wouldn’t want to put up with me sometimes either. He is such a lovely kid, I want to spend time with him, and I miss him when he isn’t here. It’s just he is growing up, and an adult now, I want him to be with his friends, I just don’t want to lose him either. Does that make sense?
I knew one day they’d grow up. I know that they’ll all move out. I want them to be happy, and I know that if they all achieve the things they are doing and are successful and settled that I will have done a good job. I just didn’t think it would be so hard to let them go. I’m not quite ready to yet, but I’ll try, and I’ll hope they’ll all come back to me one day too.