In addition to being middle aged, menopausal and muddle headed, I am also mom to Aaron, now 16 years old. It’s not always easy; as he tells me, I’m older than all his friends’ parents. Actually I could be his grandmother. But I’m not. I’m his mother, and the fact that there is a lost generation somewhere between us makes for some interesting parenting.
I like to think of myself as cool and ‘with it’ where Aaron is concerned. After all, I did teach for many years, and wasn’t I 16 years old at some time in history? However, nothing could have prepared me for raising a son from age 10 to 16 as a single parent. He was embarrassed when I told him that I had joined Facebook, but not half as badly as when I forced him to add me as a friend. Actually I wanted to find out what he was up to. So one day after he had gotten an exceptionally good report at school, his status on Facebook said, “Anally raped the report card!!” I’m not sure what that means, but I couldn’t say anything about it or else he would block me and then I would be out of his loop. So I had to suck it up.
Once I tried to go on his computer to see what he was up to, but when I got to the password part, something came up that said, “Get the hell off my computer”. There were only the two of us living in the house. I guess that was for me.
On one of the rare occasions that we actually had a conversation in the car, we were talking about religion and he said, “Mom, I’m an atheist.”
Why? Why my son? How utterly embarrassing! No wonder I had to pay him five dollars every Sunday to come to church.
I didn’t mind his long hair and thought that I was one modern momma for saying nothing for months on end as it got longer and longer. It was also getting dirtier and greasier, covering his face, and causing incredible acne eruptions. At one point I insisted that he get it cut. Amidst many protestations he went for the dreaded clipping. I guess I liked it too much, because the day after that he went and asked a friend to shave his head. I should have said nothing. What’s a mother to do? I thought I’d use some reverse psychology, so I told him that he had a cute bald head and very expressive eyes, something I couldn’t see before. I had thought that my approval would make him grow it to a decent length again. Not so. He kept a well shaven head for two years, so I did get used to it. What else could I do?
The other day we were discussing schoolwork, tests, assignments and marks, and I was expressing my concerns with his performance.
“Don’t worry Mom”, he said, “I own the school.”
Now what on earth does that mean? He owns the school? Maybe it’s time to get out my Urban Dictionary and figure it out.