I think most mothers place the "mother's curse" upon their children at one time or another. I know my mother said many, many times, "I hope you have a child JUST like YOU when you someday". Somehow I knew she was not saying that because I was such a joy to raise.
Since my two boys are almost grown (17 and 21), I have, on a few occasions enjoyed the fact that I had somehow outwitted my mother's "curse". My two boys are wonderful. Really. I never have to worry about what they're in to. I feel a bit guilty at times because I can't really relate to people who talk about how difficult it is to raise teenagers. They, thankfully, have not been at all like I was growing up. If they had been, it's likely I'd be locked up somewhere. Whether that would be jail or a mental hospital, who's to say.
Then this morning, I realized that the curse has a way of finding you regardless and does not necessarily have to be about your own flesh and blood chilren. Yes, as my own children are almost grown, I now find myself with a 16 year-old daughter. She is not a real daughter and she is not 16. She is a 22 year-old girl that has moved into the home where I work. She loves rock music (we agree on that anyway), and spends hours in her room listening to it blasting loud enough for the neighbors to hear, talks for hours on the phone to her boyfriend, and she hates being told "no". In fact, I discovered last night just how badly she hates to be told "no". She really hates it a lot. She has only been in the home for a week and in most cases is delightful, but when she does not get her way she goes ballistic. In fact, she is due in court Monday to answer charges of assaulting a staff person in her old house. (I don't know this for a fact, but I'll be willing to bet that the staff person told her no about something.)
We had an ordeal last night over dinner (I'll spare you all the gory details). She did cool off (in her room) and apologized later. After dinner we needed to run to the store to pick up milk and a few other necessary items. That in itself is a huge hassle because the other lady in the house is in a wheelchair. Sidenote - whoever said "handicapped" parking spaces are adequate to accommodate handicapped people have obviously never had to get a wheelchair out of a van with a lift. So we proceeded to get into the van to run to the store. And don't you know it, the lift was not working. That meant we had to walk to the store. Now, the new girl (22 going on 16 year old rock chick) is also blind, which presented a few challenges in walking the 2 miles to the store. Ever try to lead a blind person down a broken up sidewalk for 2 miles with a wheelchair bound person in tow as well?? Try it. It's fun. Really.
We made it back unscathed and then my evening was spent watching an infomercial on TV with 48 year old wheelchair grump and listening to "We Built This City on Rock and Roll" pouring from 22 going on 16 year old's room. I also spent several minues trying to explain to 22 going on 16 year old's boyfriend that I am in fact, not a Lesbian. Don't ask where that came from - I have no idea unless it had something to do with holding on to her as I guided her on that 2 mile hike to the store.
Now I am home from my 20 hour shift which felt more like a 48 hours shift. I've not slept and I'm really exhausted. I have to go back in 6 hours to work another 12 hours. I get off at 8 tomorrow morning and then need to rush off to Sunday school to teach a class. God only knows what my mental state will be like by that time.
In the meantime, I am learning a lesson I'm sure. When I figure out what it is, I'll let you know.