Days 2017

Days 2017

Sunday, June 29, 2008

A Teenager All Over Again

I'd like to present to all of you some scientific observations I've made these last couple years. I am not very qualified to make a formal study, but I am married to a man who graduated with a BS in Sociology (shhh. It's our little secret...) before he went on to get an MBA. And he speaks French, therefore, has plenty of BS to go around. So here is my informal contribution to the academic world. I am calling my theory the Teenager Echo Effect. I always wondered at the strange behavior of my parents when I was a teen, as did my friends. Now as a parent of small children, some of their motivations are surfacing. Hypothesis: It's all about REVENGE. They want you teens to feel exactly as they felt while they were trying to parent you as small children. Whether they realize it or not, your frustrated, angst-filled being is an echo of their frustration with you, years before. You don't believe me? My observations are actually quite compelling.
*My experiences as a teen were not always typical.
**The typical teen noted does not always refer to my personal experiences, either.
***These are only lightly taken observations, leaving out much of the positive differences. I'm much happier as an adult, really.

The Teenager Echo Effect

You've all heard that having children makes you feel young again. Personally, my kids make me feel like a teenager. That's right. Here's why, in no particular order:
1. They never let me do anything.
2. They throw a fit if I'm not home by bedtime, and it's the same thing for all my friends.
3. I speak a different language than grownups. The original teenage years used strange words like "rad", "the bomb", "my bad" and "total hottie". Now in my echo teenage years, there's a lot of, "Did yo brudder bang you on yo chinny chin chin?" And "the bomb" refers to something much nastier.
4. I have to drive a nerdy car. Then, an old beige station wagon (ha ha Michelle!). Now, an old silver minivan. With a broken taillight. (We leave it that way so I can pick it out from all the other Honda Odysseys in the WalMart parking lot...)
5. Cute boys are crawling all over me. (Wait a second, this didn't ever actually happen the first time around. Scratch that one. But hey, they still talk like cavemen and burp a lot.)
6. They wake me up way before I'm ready. And they always seem really happy about it, too, that's what gets me. This one I think I will really enjoy taking my revenge on.
7. Back to that different language thing. Did your parents ever try out the "in" vocabulary and it came out totally misused? That works in the echo years, too. Mark gave Boston something at the table and Boston patted him lovingly on the hand. "Thanks fo' be my wife."
8. They bug me to get off the phone and interrupt me whenever I'm trying to carry on a conversation with a cute guy. (Mom....Youth Conference...1995....)
9. I try to tell them that it's the weekend and I should get a break, but they still make me do all this work.
10. Someone's always crying at the dinner table. (Um, Darcy? Hope you've stopped that habit now that you're in those echo years yourself.) The bad news about the echo years is that whoever is crying is generally too young to threaten with having to do all the dishes if they don't quit it.
11. They don't like what I wear. But in the echo years, instead of just giving the raised eyebrow, they completely destroy the wardrobe before I leave the house.
12. Oh, and they make me spend my money on responsible things like socks and underwear, and when I do finally get to go shopping for some new clothes for myself, they manage to completely embarrass me in the dressing room. (My mom wasn't crawling around into other people's stalls while screaming, but she still managed to get the job done thoroughly.)
13. They cry when I leave home. My parents are still trying to pull that one on me and I'm almost thirty, so I'm thinking I must have been a really attached baby.
14. Someone short with cold feet and sharp toenails is always crawling into my bed for nightmare recovery. (Hmm. Brooke would be the original guilty party on this one.)
15. I have to change diapers. Mom, working at the nursing home was not good practice for motherhood, no matter how many times I tried to tell myself that. It was just more diapers.
16. I have big plans for when I (I mean they) grow up.
17. The potty language I am surrounded by is way beneath me.
18. My friends and I have gone through wild hormone changes and are trying to recover by telling each other repeatedly how skinny we are looking.
19. Their mouth is movin', but I ain't pickin' up what they're puttin' down, if you know whaddimean.
20. They love me more than anyone and I know they are here to teach me to be like Jesus. So I guess the echo years aren't so bad, either.


Michelle said...

This post was hilarious!!! I hadn't compared myself to this before, but it is SO incredibly true.

Darcy said...

You should submit this to readers digest or something, I loved it.

Laurie said...

so true, Jackie, love it!