Daughters and dating….I am pretty sure you could read a lot in that heading if you are a mom to a teenage girl.
Pretty much up to now my daughter has been the perfect role model of the perfect daughter, well ok, not 100% so as she is no angel. Like everyone else she has some flaws but that is not what this blog is about.
Life is as life goes. You fall pregnant, you cannot wait for the baby to be born. You have your first child and you are in seventh heaven, life can’t get any better…except for the fact that they sent down a cranky, colicky, 24/7 crying baby. For six long months this baby drove her mommy completely nuts! Crying, crying and more crying. Not that that impacted at all on our mutual bonding. We are still as close today as we were when she was a teeny tiny babe.
Once the colic was over life got better. Dealing with her became a pleasure not a scary movie anymore, too scared to touch or look at her skew out of fear that somehow something will trigger the crying again. I quickly forgot how bad the first six months were alone with her stressing over every crying bout. We attacked life with much enthusiasm and had heaps of fun.
The years went by and almost without me noticing and almost overnight my little colicky baby grew up and turned into a swan. One that doesn’t believe it when you tell her she is pretty or have beautiful hair (which she normally uses as a curtain to hide behind..), when you tell her she’s got a lovely figure and to change out of the horrible daily sweats into something more appealing or something teenagy even.
Nevertheless, even in sweats she’s a lovely young girl, well her (probably) very biased mother thinks so anyway (and a lot of our friends agree). Over the years there has been minimal boy contact and never was she the type to have a ‘boyfriend’ at any stage of her ‘inbetweener’ phase. Scoffing at friends with their so-called boyfriends when they barely hit their teens she never had any interest in the boys around her apart from the obvious friends only type.
Although I can recall one particular boy when she was in grade 7 that took a particular interest in this tomboy girl of mine whom would much rather muck out stables and ride horses than wear dresses and go to parties. William however was a lovely boy who followed her quite loyally and even came to visit a few times ending up accompanying her to one milkshake date and ultimately to the grade 7 farewell. Unfortunately for the budding couple and fortunately for mom’s nerves we moved house shortly after exchanging Natal for the beautiful Cape.
Daughters dating was not on this mom’s agenda yet…not for a long time to come! Or so I thought! Once again time went by so fast, I blinked and she turned 17 last month. I cannot tell you how hard it is for me to come to terms with the fact that my little baby girl is not so little anymore…and what’s more…she’s dating for the first time in her life.
Easy it is not. The mom in me is afraid, afraid that she might get hurt. that this boy that she thinks is so wonderful is not what he seems to be. That he might break her heart or for that matter that she might break his. I have been watching the friendship grow these last two months, text upon text 24/7 chatting and slowly getting to the point of an outing together, walking to the bus-stop together, a visit to our house. I love the way it’s been slowly growing a little bit more everyday, I love her for keeping me in her life by sharing little tidbits with me, surely not everything but at least some of it which is more than some other moms can say. I enjoy seeing her smile when she reads his messages, reminding me of when I was dating her father. I enjoy teasing her as do her brother and not get so much as a rise out of her. Clever girl! 😉
But see;……it’s time. It’s time for her to spread her wings and live life. It’s time to spread them and hopefully she won’t fly off and not come back. It’s time for her to explore a relationship with someone else outside of her normal circle of mom, dad, annoying brother, friends, family and school peers. Now the question remains to be seen…do I love her enough to let her go? Do I love her enough to let her make her own choices, deal with her own mistakes? I hope I do… I love her so much and as difficult as it is I would like for her to just be happy. I will continue to urge her to be careful and to make good decisions and to think things over not rushing into anything but above all, I will wait in the wings, trying not to judge and meddle and support her whatever happens.