I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!

It was always my goal to raise strong, assertive children.  In addition, I was particularly determined to instill in my daughters a sense of equality.  I never wanted them to feel as females as if they were secondary or needed to be submissive to males.  I wanted them all to be comfortable in their individuality and fierce in their defense of the disenfranchised.

Mission accomplished.  Each one of them has grown into their own strong and assured personality.  There is just one small problem…well, more like one medium problem.  The youngest child – Cheyenne – is only 13 and a strong and assured personality at age 13, while great in theory, is quite a different thing in practice. Attitude is already in present in abundance at age 13, but attitude from a strong and assured personality that is fairly sure she has her moral center firmly planted – well now, that is a special kind of hell.  Oh no, I am not bitter.  No, no – I am just tired.

Some days – days when Cheyenne is in her Gloria Steinem wheelhouse – I have to take a moment and remind myself that this is the strength I wanted to nurture.  She is the fourth of four and as I look at the other three I realize that she not only has had the benefit of her mother’s influence, she has also had the benefit of her siblings’ influence.

As I said, I am tired.  Cheyenne is 13 going on 32 and I am in the new forty feeling like I need a Life Alert necklace.  Teenagerhood on overdrive – I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.  ;-)

Day one thousand two hundred and thirty-six of the new forty – obla di obla da

Ms. C

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About Ms. C

I teach at NDSU...but I remain a student of life with all the enthusiasm that entails. My favorite saying is, "Sometimes you have to take the leap and build your wings on the way down." In the new forty that is what I am doing...building my wings.
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3 Responses to I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!

  1. Barbara says:

    Deep breaths, Ms. C–peace and sanity WILL prevail. You’ve done this 4 times with admirable success (the dissertation–remember?). Cheyenne will navigate those choppy seas of teenhood and eventually find that being an assertive fierce girl does NOT mean behaving like an Drama-rama Queen or being a bottomless black hole of attention seeking (look-at-me, look-at-me-me-me).

    Tip: Keep that picture handy of her holding Lennon, wearing that million dollar smile. It will help reassure you that she has a wonderful start, that “this too shall pass” and help the tired go away. :)

  2. PrairieWoman says:

    Underneath it all there is a sweet little soul that loves her mom. Many times I had to get out the baby pictures of my oldest to remind me that 1.) Yes this was really my offspring, and 2.) She was as innocent as a lamb once, and somewhere underneath the hellfire that rained down, lived my baby. 8 years later, I have my baby back. I do not miss that special kind of hell at all. I empathize with you, my friend. But, like Barbara said, this too shall pass. :)

  3. Katherine says:

    You will both thrive — albeit with a headache or two along the way. You have the entire toolbox. She is still building her toolbox.

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