Wow. I can't believe it's been so long since I posted on here. I'm still living, but I have multiple teenaged daughters now, and two tweens, so....really I should be checked for signs of life daily. No. Seriously.
Because this is hard ya'll. Real hard.
I often think about my past when my girls are going through whatever situation they are at the time and think, I would never have made it if I was growing up right now. A world where media and contact is everything, except personal and real, and the competition to be someone worth likes, snaps, favorites and heart icons is the only thing that matters is a world I can barely navigate. How can I expect fragile teens to do that?
How do you instill in your kids their own personal worth? Nothing hurts a Mom as much as when their child believes deep down that they are not enough. To the point where they sabotage themselves so much that others believe it too and give up on them? I'm not blaming other kids, because why wouldn't they? If you're told something enough or tested enough you're eventually gonna go, yeah. That's true. I believe you.
When every other thing in life tells them otherwise, social media and devices control so much in life. What are things we can do to build them up in this world where they are constantly comparing themselves to everyone else. How do you tell them it's not reality? I feel like some of my kids get that. But the ones that don't....ugh. It's pain. And it's hard. And I'm a parent trying to raise kids in a world I'm unfamiliar with.
Right now things are pretty tough around here, where teenagers are concerned heartbreak can be especially brutal. That's what we are dealing with now. Plain and simple heartbreak. We've had it before, sure, but never like this. Never after being SO impossibly in love. And THAT leads me to the meat of why I'm writing this post.
Let's talk about teenage love for a moment. I bet when you read that you guffawed or at the very least had an eye roll moment? But - wait, hear me out! When my second oldest daughter fell in love for the first time she was saying she loved him and he her. It was pretty early on in their relationship and I'll admit, I guffawed and eyerolled and the works.
Teens don't know what love is. Especially so early on. How could they possibly understand that, right?
According to Google the definition of "LOVE" is: an intense feeling of deep affection. That's a pretty ambiguous definition! What does that even mean?
Well, love, to me is fighting for someone, no matter how unlovable they are in the moment. It's accepting the good and the bad and holding on when things get tough, and they do. It's being vulnerable to another person and knowing no matter how unlovable you are they will remember why they are with you and stand by your side through it all. But that's the thing. That's love -- to me. Right now.
Love is not the same thing all the time. It changes so much throughout our lives. It grows, it ebbs, it metamorphoses depending on where you are in that stage of life. The love that I have for my husband today is not the same as the day he asked me to be his wife. And that day, that love, isn't the same as when we married or had our babies.
I've put a lot of thought into that and decided that I don't know what my kids are feeling, I am not the judge of love. I don't want to be. They are in love. It's a feeling, it's a verb and it's personal. So, next time your teen says they are in love and you think they are crazy, believe them instead. Please?
Because, when they do get their hearts broken, and they inevitably will, you might understand just a bit more. You might be able to hold them a bit tighter or remember how painful that can be. And they SO need that. They don't need you to think they are ridiculous or unknowing. They need you to love them. Because someone else no longer does.