Last week my daughter was telling me about how one girl told her that another girl didn't like her because she is too bossy. She was mad at this girl for talking badly about her. I found myself sounding like my mother (not sure if that is bad or good...) as I tried to comfort her. I explained to her that she should try not to worry about it, forgive the girl (realizing that junior high is a difficult age and often filled with this exact type of drama) and maybe use the information to evaluate her own actions and determine if the other girl's complaint was warranted. Has she ever done anything that this girl would perceive as bossiness without realizing it? And besides, is telling me this stuff about the other girl any better than said girl talking about my daughter in the first place? I reminded her to think about WWJD (What would Jesus do?) when she reacts to things like this. Then I started to sing, "I'm trying to be like Jesus" (because I have a habit of breaking into song when anything reminds me of a song.)
I really thought that my words were kind. I tried to empathize with her, sharing similar frustrating experiences from my own 7th grade year, and then adding some advice for how to make it more bearable.
Right after I started to sing, I heard my daughter make a weird growl and literally stomp her feet. Then she preceded to tell me (or yell at me, rather) about how she hates it when I try to make her feel better, especially when doing so causes me to burst into song. (She will be a teenager in less than a month, after all. It is at this age that my dad always said he would prefer that the child act their shoe size as opposed to their age. :)
Anyway. I stopped singing and stopped saying anything. We were walking together to pick up the youngest child from daycare, and we continued the last stretch in silence.
During the silence, I thought about what she had said. She didn't want me to try to make her feel better; she wanted me to be mad at this other girl with her.
Then I realized that I frequently do that on my blog. I often use it to vent about something that has upset me, and it always makes me feel better when the comments tell me I reacted the right way or that I had a right to be angry.
But when someone tries to put things in perspective for me, tries to help me feel better by analyzing what I could have done/could do differently to make life easier for everyone involved, I clam up and disable comments on my blog, because I don't want to read the comforting advice.
At times like this I must be chaneling some inner teenage Sarah that has never grown up. Why else would I so enjoy living high school over and over and over as a teacher? :)
Hm, thoughts to ponder.
Anyway, I guess a quote from my brother's wife's father (a navy man) is appropriate for me (and my daughter) sometimes . . . "A bitchin' Sailor is a happy Sailor." The problem is, no one else enjoys being around such a Sailor.
You know how parents sometimes say, "I hope you get a child just like you so that someday you will understand what you put me through." I think maybe I am beginning to understand. My poor parents. Poor Scott. Poor Hidden. (At least Hidden is not afraid to tell me when I need to shape up.)
4 weeks ago