It’s like a daily issue where something, and I mean SOMETHING goes weird. Us moms just seem to have those moments where we can’t find our keys just magically find them in the refrigerator or we can’t remember if we turned off our curling iron before we left home. And those moments cause so much anxiety. It’s hard enough being a mom, but when you put anxiety on top of that? Brutal.
Our daughter passed her mandatory six month mark to get her license after passing drivers ed and is ready to go test for her license anytime. There is however, a hitch, The car she’s been driving is an automatic and the car she will be driving is a stick shift. My husband and I don’t own an automatic, so the lessons of learning how to drive with a clutch are underway.
I have seen so many comments of kids, (I say ‘kids’ because I’m in my 40’s, but what I really mean, is 20-30+ range) say they don’t know how to drive a stick. This was not going to be an option in our household. My husband and I decided that this would be something she would know, along with how to change her own tires, check the oil and all that other stuff we think car owners should know. Ya know?
The first time I took her out in my Husbands Jeep, she did really well, but we didn’t leave the parking lot. A lot of driving around in circles and stopping, at that time, she didn’t have her permit, so we shouldn’t have even been doing it. She did really well…and as the first time riding in the passenger seat while my 16 year old little girl took the wheel, I did pretty well too. As we pulled it into the driveway, she puts it in reverse, turns the Jeep off and says, “Well, we didn’t die, so that’s good.” I told her how great she had done…..she was just happy to be on two feet again.
Skip ahead 4 months-
After she got her permit I took her out in my Jeep, this time around the neighborhood with very few cars and never went passed 2nd gear. She killed it a couple times….got honked and yelled at by some in-a-hurry- punk, (Yes, I yelled back) but, she seemed to get the hang of it.
Last weekend she went driving for the first time with her Dad in his Jeep. At this point, she’s noticing the difference in clutches and making comments about how mine is different than his and his teaching style was a little different then mine, (Better I’ll admit, but neither of us panic or yell, what good does that do a stressed out teen?) He again took her around the neighborhood, still keeping it second gear speeds and just focusing on that 1st gear take off. After that, she had no problems. When they returned, I asked, “How’d it go?” Her dad responded with a smile “She did great!” and her response was, “Well we didn’t’ die, so that’s good.” We all laughed and her Dad and I told her, “You’ll get it, it just takes practice.”
Yesterday, I took her out again in my Jeep, thinking we’ll see if we can get her up passed 2nd gear. I let her do as her Dad had shown her and yep, we were up to second gear in no time….so then I took her into a 35 mile an hour zone…”Okay, sounds like your ready for 3rd”, she shifted right into 3rd. We drove along a long stretch of road until we hit the end, turned and came back up the same road, up into 3rd gear again. At this point I had decided, I think she’s ready for a little busier road.. I mean the kid knows how to drive just fine, it’s the clutch that gets her. I took her on some back roads that come to a round-about, (She hates those in an automatic, so the clutch made it that much more enjoyable for her)..and that’s when she realized where she was going to end up….. that’s right… a busier road. 45 MPH BABY, You’re ready for 4th gear. She said, “Wait, your taking me on a road with lots of cars?” I laughed and said, “Well, yeah! You know how to drive, you’re shifting fine, just don’t panic on first and we’ll be great.” She just took a deep breathe and was like, “Alright then, I guess we’re doing this.” As we sat at the stop sign, probably 7 cars headed towards her, she said, “Okay, I’m gonna wait…….until after that white car, then go, okay?” I said, “Sounds good.” And then we were off, the two miles back to our house was 45 and lots of traffic, but she was doing great. About 2 block from our house I asked her, “Are you done for the day?” She looked at me and said, “I am so done. That was intense, but we didn’t die so that’s good.” I laughed told her how well she’d done and high-fived her. I said, “Well, we’ll do the same thing tomorrow, same route and everything. Pretty soon you’ll be ready for the freeway.” She just looked at me like I’d lost my marbles. “Oh….I hate the freeway, even in an automatic.” I just smiled.
We’ll drive again today and then the next time she goes out it will be with her dad in his Jeep.. I’m most certain we’ll hear each time, “Well, we didn’t die, so that’s good!”
For you parents who are teaching your teen to drive in an automatic, that was fun….teaching them to drive a stick, even more entertaining!
Spread Your Wings!
I love spending time with my daughter and doing her nails. We’ve had a busy day and this was the topper.
If you have any intention of watching this show and don’t want to know any details, quit reading now. You’ve been warned.
My daughter is almost 17 and goes to a school where I hear her talk about all the kids that suffer anxiety and self medicate themselves. It’s a small school, but the Resource Officer on campus has searched and seized drugs and alcohol from a few students who were suspended. She’s smelled marijuana in the bathrooms multiple times and has noticed some kids who smell of alcohol.
Anxiety in our high schools are higher than they were when we were kids, or maybe they have just given it a different meaning. Bullying isn’t something she sees or hears about at her school often but the times she has, she has brought it to the school counselor or if it was on social media she brought to us and we took it to the school. That was actually more in middle school.
I watched 13 Reasons Why, not with my daughter, but to see, one; What all the hype was about and two; to see if it was something I thought she should see. It filled me with so many emotions, I’m not sure I want her to see it, but more like have a discussion about it with her. It’s a reality that all parents need to think about and keep open communication with their children. Some kids won’t talk to you, as clearly seen in the show. If that’s the case then my feeling is; those are red flags. Why won’t they talk to you? Why do they avoid the topic? As parents we must dig deeper. Check their phones, check their social media…if they won’t talk to you, then we must become the detective to find out whats going on.
At the age of 17 I would never allow my child to go to a “party” at someone’s house without speaking to the parents, knowing the situation and whether adults….responsible adults will be there…. Not newly turned 18 year-olds whose parents are out of town. That’s trouble waiting to happen, again as shown in the show multiple times.
The rape scenes were extremely hard to watch.. again it’s reality, it happens as tragic and horrible as it is, it’s reality. I hope that I have given my child the tools to acknowledge the situations to stay out of things like this that it can occur. Teenage parties with alcohol and drugs, never a good combination.
The suicide scene, again mentally painful to watch and yet another reality. I can not fathom the pain a parent of a child who has committed suicide feels..It was heart wrenching to watch. I don’t believe in sheltering my child from the truths of the world..but I don’t believe that she’s quite ready to see it in such a graphic manner.
You may or may not agree with my opinion. The way I parent is what I feel is best for MY child. This isn’t up for debate, it’s an opinion and she’s my child.
What are you feelings on this show if you’ve watched it?
Spread Your Wings,
My 16 year old daughter is obsessed with my little pony. The thing is, I actually enjoy it myself, because let’s face it…. “Friendship is magic.” I feel like I know far more about My Little Ponies more now, than I did when I was a kid. Shes’ taught me the different generations of ponies, like in the 80’s they were the gen 1 and now like 35+ years later they are the gen 4. A lot has changed when I watched them….cutting edge compared to gen 1.
My family and and I went on one of our Family Date night to dinner and movie the other night. We chose a nice restaurant… granted it wasn’t a 3 or 4 star restaurant, but the plates were around $30 a dinner. Prime Rib, Victoria cut fillets and salmon with a potato of your choice, baked or mashed and your choice of soup or salad and fresh in-season vegetable. The napkins were cloth, folded ever so perfectly around our utensils and the plates were white and stylish. The dinner was nice and as always the company was the best part. Unfortunately, looking around I was reminded of something I figured out a while ago: the art of dining etiquette is lost on many…
This is such a painful subject that the conversation is often avoided and yet it occurs far more than most people realize.
This is my story…I hope in some way it will help others in similar situations.