Parenting a teenager is a whole different ball game. The door has closed on teaching them how to cross the street safely, stranger danger, and buckling their seatbelt. What’s left? Teaching your child to be a good person. Much of this is done by example. Sometimes there are lessons that a parent can teach to save hardship or heartbreak. Sometimes said hardship or heartbreak isn’t even for your own child but maybe for those they encounter in the crazy microcosm that is middle school. The greatest lesson to teach is that middle school isn’t real life. Well, it’s real enough to the goose and was certainly my reality when I was there, but maybe I can give insight into what is yet to come.
Be kind, even when you know it isn’t the popular thing to do. Be yourself, even when you know that people think you are weird. Live your life in a way that when you put your head on your pillow you can be proud. The rules remain the same even if the game changes from middle school to adulthood. Do your best to be thoughtful of other people’s feelings. Obviously you can’t live in other people’s skin, but most people will let you slide if you’ve misstepped, if they know that your aim was true. Those that can’t, well maybe they weren’t built to be your friend. That happens. You can’t be friends with all people, but it costs you nothing to be kind.
I stepped off of my soap box to realize that my diatribe had gone so long that the goose had missed her bus. As we ambled out to the car. She laden with all that she must carry, real and imagined. Me bounding on my light footsteps.
“wouldn’t you like to wear a jacket?”, the goose asked.
while the honest answer was no, looking down at my thin summer nightie, I realized that if I was going to practice what I had just preached, I better put on a jacket.
I did ask if I had to zip it up……..