There is something fascinating happening in my home these days. It actually started a while ago, but sometimes what happens right under our noses is hard to perceive. Now let me preface the following by admitting that I am inexperienced and an early observer of this development, but it intrigues me greatly and I am devouring the novelty, soaking up every nuance, embracing the peaks and valleys that are bound to it like water to the sand.
What I am referring to is the process commonly known as PUBERTY.
Not mine…see post entitled “41”. But I am the mother to a 13 year old boy and the changes happening almost daily are really delightful to witness. These changes are nothing unique, but having left home when my only brother was 11 years old, I did not have a window into the boys’ side of things.
The first hint of things to come was the development of some skin blemishes, accompanied by an increased need to shower and an equally increased need to resist said shower. I might be the naggy-est mom around but seriously – hygiene, people. A wee bit of easily overlooked advice to parents of teens with mild blemishes – wash pillowcases twice a week and have your teen flip the pillow each night. For what it’s worth, in combination with regular cleansing, this has definitely made an impact for the better.
A recent school ski trip prompted us to obtain an accurate height and weight of our teen. Blimey! When did you grow 2 inches? You haven’t grown this fast in the last DECADE!! And how on earth did those shoes we bought you last week get too small?? And so begins a chunk of time in which your teen’s clothes and shoes will either be two sizes too big or too small…because I’m not buying new winter boots in February. I’m just being frugal, people. He doesn’t like to wear boots anyway. And honestly, why is wearing a coat or gloves such a lame idea? I know I was the same way as a youth but I now enjoy being warm and can’t understand the logic of freezing my fanny off when other options are available. Just don’t sing me a sad song when your fingers fall off.
Speaking of singing (I know, a seriously pathetic transition, but if the shoe fits…), a couple of weeks ago my boy-man was crooning and I couldn’t actually decide if a strange man was squatting in my basement and had finally decided to let us know of his presence by belting out a tune, or if my son was using a voice-altering device. Turns out it was neither. He can just sing an octave lower now. Basically overnight. And the amusing thing is that his speaking voice is not nearly as deep as his singing voice. Is this a thing? Maybe he will be one of those men who definitely looks like a tenor but then BOOM! Fooled ya!
Food consumption is an entire essay. I will spare you. But what you hear is true – we have discovered a hidden door to a bottomless black hole of hunger. Be warned and plant potatoes.
And then the true hallmark of the transition to teenagedom – the ability to subtly make fun of your parents and get away with it because what you have to say is both funny and true. Being able to reason with and engage in conversations with your teen because he has unique thoughts and ideas and he wants and needs to be HEARD, and what he has to say is GOOD. And then watching him dip back into childhood in the shape of a snow-wrestle, a brother-fight, and some uncontrollable laughter.
Yes, these are the beautiful moments, and the broken moments are all there too. But the cracks, you see, that’s how the light gets out. So let your broken moments bring light to everyone you meet, my man-child. Let them keep your heart tender to the things of God and the people He loves.