Monday, June 12, 2017


“If you’re going to react that way, I can’t tell you things.”
“I inhaled.”

Out of all the reactions I could have had, the only thing I did was inhale. As in, breathe. While I’m willing to admit I often react first and think second when it comes to one of my teens telling me something, I’m unwilling to compromise on breathing.

Last week was prom. This past weekend was after-prom. I’m actually surprised I was able to inhale—I thought I was holding my breath from Thursday on. Apparently biology beat out psychology and left me with a little extra air to inhale.

We had many long conversations about after-prom. She was going to the Poconos.

You know, where the bears live.

She was going with a group of twenty or so friends—safety in numbers.

Except I didn’t know all of them.

There were going to be lots of things to do.

Not going there...nope.

So we talked about safety and responsibility and good judgment and what was acceptable (or not).

We also talked about what to do if something felt off.

Ultimately we let her go. She’s responsible. She’s proven she knows how to handle herself. And she’s going off to college in a few months, where I won’t have the luxury of knowing what she’s doing at all times.

She called. And I inhaled.

And then I remembered that she was doing exactly what we talked about her doing when she felt uncomfortable. So we talked and we strategized and ultimately, everything was fine.

She came home in one piece. She had a great time. None of the things I worried about came true.

She didn’t even get eaten by a bear.

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