The very air in which you live is an inspiration. -William Henry Moody

December 4, 2007

Contrary to popular belief, teens do notice what their parents do for them.  While a exasperated parent of a teen might grumble, “I’m the air she breaths!” the teen does realize that without air, he or she would be very badly off.  That without air, life would not be possible, and no fake substitute would sufice.  Not every day, or every time, their parent goes out of their way for them does a teen thank their parents, because let’s face it, if a teen thanked their parents for every little thing they do for the teen, the parent might start to get a bit suspicious, “So what did yah do, kid?”  Seriously, the teen years are a very selfish time.  Selfishness that is encouraged or normalized by today’s culture.  Thank your parents?!  Pssh.  Those oldies are the ones holding you back, repressing you from ‘being yourself,’ embarrassing you, constantly nagging and guilting you, when you just can’t understand what they have against your boyfriend…s….?  Thank them?  If we thanked them, they would think that they are oh so much better…and probably end up giving us a lecture.  This is the damaged thinking that is hugely responsible for the rebellious teenager stereotype.  This is also the damaged thinking that causes ‘rebellious’ teens to mock teens who honestly admire their parents and, (gee) here’s a novel idea, thank them for what they do.  Teens and parents are not enemies!  Yes, I said it.  It was never meant to be that way, but as we live in a culture of death, we shouldn’t be surprised at this turn of events.

I write this as no expert in communicating thanks and praise.  I am generally a thankful person, but I am not the best at working on bigger ‘Thank Yous,’ or going out of my way to spend time and sometimes money on thanking or celebrating a person.  I have muddled through some of my parents’ birthdays and Mother’s and Father’s Days–but no more! 

Tomorrow is my Mother’s birthday.  She will be turning however many years YOUNG as my brother, Ian, would say.  My Mother is amazing.  She pulls all us slackers together (hehe) and works so hard, words cannot describe.  She has been through everything, and because of that ‘everything’ she has a magnus amount of knowledge that she shares with me everyday.  Note: this last instance is sometimes a double-bladed sword, because I (who have not that magnus amount of knowledge) sometimes wonder, “How did she know that?” or “Why couldn’t she have just told me–I don’t need anymore character building!”  My Mom has a wonderful sense of humor, although she might tell you she isn’t funny, and we are a very good team.  I never once in my life doubted her love for me, faith in me, or expectations of me.  Oft times I feel unworthy, but she will be there with some word (or many words 😉 ) to comfort and reassure me. 

No, she did not pay me to write this. 😀

I did not want to have good intentions (which pave the road to where?) and yet let her birthday slip by and do something minimal this year.  I wasn’t about to rent the hall and throw a surprise party (oh ho ho, she’d LOVE that!), but I wanted whatever my Dad, brothers and I did to celebrate be thoughtful and a bit bigger than what we had done in the past. 

I wrote a itinerary.  I knew she’d like that. 😀

Since one of my favorite ways to give gifts is to cook, we are going to be eating good tomorrow!  (More posts specifically about the food later.)

I planned a little recital consisting of my brothers and I…getting the boys into church clothes on a Wednesday will be interesting, though. 

I found a pretty little gift to give her that I thought was quite fitting.  (I’m being vague because she might read this before she opens her gift.)

 Two quotes that I featured on the itinerary from two family favorites:

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.”                ~Mark Twain

“In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.”
~Abraham Lincoln

If I was to try to count all the life in the years of my Mom’s life, I’d be counting for a very long time.  As it is, I am already up late and I have a birthday celebrate tomorrow!

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