My daughter and I were peeling potatoes for dinner the other night when we happened upon This American Life's Middle School podcast. If you, or someone you love, is currently in Middle School, please stop reading this drivel and go listen to Ira Glass instead. It was that brilliant.
I don't admit this much in public, but I am fascinated by this tween, middle-school, awkward stage we are finding ourselves in right now. I know I'm supposed to hate it and complain about middle-school. I suppose that when you start your parenting journey with 6 months of constant screaming, it takes a lot to rattle you. (Yes, we still compare every single developmental stage to colic. "Terrible Twos? nah, not as bad as the colic.")
I'm actually enjoying this stage. (I truly hesitate to write that - does this mean my lovely child will now come home with a Mohawk and tattoos and multiple body piercings to prove me wrong?)
For me, the most incredible part is seeing brief glimpses of the adult who is slowly emerging out of all of this childhood stuff. The shocking part is that this amazing person is *nothing* like me.
I always knew, somewhere in my brain, that the critical developmental act of the teenage years would be the whole "independence" thing. But I guess I always thought the kids would rebel against parents and authority, but eventually they'd settle in to be little carbon-copy miniatures of me.
They'd like to shop at Banana Republic. They'd want to be in the school musical. They'd think George Eliot is the greatest author, ever.
So far - no, no and no.
I am quite sure that the slamming doors and the "I hate you's" and the sulking silent treatments are lurking just around the corner. Hopefully I'll be able to step back and say, "Nope, still not as bad as the colic" and soldier on in the process of creating incredible & independent individuals.
(Preferably ones that don't scream incessantly.)