So tonight we began with a textbook parenting case. "Tonight," I told Jillian, "You will be in bed by 1:00 AM or I am going to go ahead and go to bed. If you are after 1, you can come to my room and kiss me, but I will be in my own room."
Turns out, I lied. At 1:05 she was nearly finished, and I didn't see any reason to upset the apple cart over 5 minutes. Then she needed her back cracked (I'm terrible at that). She needed more water. She need to stretch her back, and her blankets must die (according to her) for all the trouble they cause her in refusing to stay tucked. So here we are now, 1:49 and she is still cheerily calling out goodnight. She's happy as a lark. And each time that lark sings I cringe.
Really...the rest of the day we have a fairly normal, slightly rocky mother and daughter relationship. But as soon as the clock hits 11:00 pm, things go downhill. I wish I could change this pattern, but here we still are. I am trying during these teenage years to pick and choose my battles, to hold my tongue even when I see disaster looming. But oh the hairs on the back of my head stand up each time she thinks of a new question to toss out into the living room. I think, "How old are you? These are childish games, not for you. You are almost 15." Then I begin to worry about her, which of course makes my temper shorter than it was to begin with. And then, well it is a self-defeating and self-destructive cycle after that.
So here I sit...sending words and emotions out into the blogosphere for no apparent reason and no apparent readers. But somehow at the end of this rant, I feel better. Maybe that's the reason.