I have a weekly ritual that I conduct with my 13 year old daughter. Early on Monday mornings I drive her to her Classical Conversations day-long class. Because I’m all about a healthy nutritious breakfast, we stop at McDonald’s to get her an egg burrito. It could be worse. I’ve been known to order the Bacon Egg Cheese Biscuit Heart Stopper in days gone by. Anyhoo. It’s protein. She’s a tough sell on breakfast. Unless it’s cold pizza.
I pick my battles.
This week I decided to shake things up a bit. As she climbed into the passenger seat, I auto-locked the door and stuck a CD into the console. The minute she heard the subject matter, she tried to exit the vehicle, but HELLO, auto-lock! The title of the CD I was subjecting her to was Dr. James Dobson’s Preparing for Adolescence: How to Survive the Coming Years of Change.
MOM! NOOOOO. I kept checking her to be certain that she didn’t jam her pointer fingers into her ear canal. Remember, this is the child who when told about the joys of menstruation turned pale and slid down the wall. I’ve been spoon feeding her information over the years so that she is current with all necessary data. She has not been a willing listener, most days, because I suppose that she shares my DNA. Ignorance is bliss, that’s my mantra.
But I thought it was important for us to listen to Dr. Dobson’s series, lest some vital piece of the puzzle slips through the cracks. I fear that when we really get into the series and cover the REALLY DELICATE information, I may need to have my pointer fingers pried out from my ear drums. Sometimes this mothering business means you’ve got to put on your big girl panties and be the grown up.
I don’t prefer that. But whatever.
I got this series from my SIL, Trish, who recently had her older son listen to it while traveling at high rates of speed down the highway. She had to keep reminding him to get up from the floor board of the back seat, because that position was not at all safe. Or legal. She was vindicated when she learned that her son was taking this new found information and discussing it with his dad at a later time.
Emme was equally horrified at the thought of going through this series WITH HER MOTHER IN THE CAR. But I do want to be available for questions and answers. And there could very well be stuff that I don’t even know. Although I won’t let on.
As we were listening, both me and my reluctant prisoner, we pulled up to the drive-through at McDonald’s where the usual teenaged boy was ever ready to offer excellent service upon seeing my beautiful daughter riding shotgun. As the window lowered, she panicked and hit the CD button, causing the volume TO INCREASE. This was right before turning it off. In the nick of time. My passenger began praying for death to come swiftly.
So far we’ve covered feelings of inferiority and conformity in adolescence. We’re about to embark on the explanation of puberty, which includes clear instructions that the parents should listen first without the teenager. I may need a quart of ice cream to get through that one.
I really do think that Dr. Dobson should tackle Preparing for Menopause in his next CD venture. Which should come with a complementary Prozac and chocolates. Seriously. There is money to be made with that idea.
It should be noted that Emme has volunteered to walk to Classical Conversations next Monday morning. If she leaves at about 10:00 the night before, she just might make it.
Has anyone else listened to this series, and what are your thoughts?