I’m currently navigating the Mother – Daughter relationship with an almost 12 year-old. Let me tell you, it’s no picnic. I already navigated the Daughter – Mother relationship and I think my mother and I survived the growing years with only minor injuries. Not bad for an Italian family where there is a constant threat of being hit with a wooden spoon. But I digress.
I can’t seem to get this Mother – Daughter thing right and maybe I never will. Or maybe by the time I realize I did, my daughter will be a mother herself. Which will make me old enough to have lost my mind and I won’t care. Either way, the road through the growing years is more like a war zone. And not so much for raising a boy. His road seems to be filled with minor pot holes. Relatively easy to drive around and only a few that bend your rim beyond repair. I feel badly about that. But why should I think raising two different children should be the same? Because I’m a stubborn Italian, that’s why.
And being a stubborn Italian doesn’t help any when you’re playing the role of Mother. I want so badly for my daughter to heed my advice. Doesn’t she realize I’m wasting valuable air because I love her and want the best for her? Not now, she doesn’t. Nope, now all she wants is to figure it out for herself and all I want to do is convince her to listen to me. I’m working on that. Like the other day, when I arrived at her Lip Sync tryouts with a brand new hula hoop she needed for her act. I had stopped work early, drove in the pouring rain for 20 minutes to purchase a stupid, plastic hoop filled with water. Well, guess what? She didn’t like. She said it was too light. She wanted her old one that was peeling and looked like we dragged it out of a dumpster. I wanted to tell her they were the exact same thing from the same company and hula hoops don’t come in different weights. It’s a six dollar item. Not something used by Olympic athletes around the world. But, this time I caught myself.
“Use your old one,” I said. And off she went with a look of triumph. It wasn’t worth the fight. Score one for the Italian.
Maybe there’s hope for me yet. Maybe not. There’s still a lot of terrain left to travel on this Mother – Daughter road. And if all else fails, there’s always the wooden spoon.