I missed you guys. Really. But things have been… interesting.
In the last month, I’ve been struggling with how to move forward with the blog. I wanted to post recipes, but the circumstances of my life felt like doing so would minimize the experiences I’ve been going through these last 32 days. And then when I thought about getting back on track….
The Kid just confirmed that he is not going to finish high school and would, in fact, be leaving on Easter to ‘go out into the wilderness and find himself’.
Read it again if you need to. I’ll wait….
He had a nine-page written presentation and all. That was a week ago Sunday. Let me keep it really real: when he said this a week ago, I was on 10 in .000000001 nanoseconds fueled by fear and anger. This CANNOT be my kid. This person, this man-child in front of me, could not be the one I birthed. Can’t be. He CAN’T be making this choice five weeks before graduation. This. Is. Not. My. Life.
Through my tears and hysteria, I got up and walked out. F*** this!
I called The Hero and, surprisingly through my snorting, tears and screaming, he understood the gist of what transpired. And he was an ear while I circled the block and got my mind right to go back and have this conversation with The Kid and his dad.
I went back to hear his reasoning for the decision. Despite how I feel and think about this decision, my child is intelligent. His mind, while extremely young, idealistic and lacking experience, is brilliant. The end goal, finding himself, was not something I consciously knew at his age. I was moseying along and came to a hard decision point by circumstance, not conscious choice.
Back to the conversation. The manner in which The Kid is going to find himself is what upset me. No planning or preparation, just walking out the door. A young, black male in a society that is inherently not on his side just out there living by the seat of his pants. Sigh.
But this decision is not about me. There is a lesson for me in it and I am open to learning it, but the reality is, Decision 2014 is about The Kid. It affects The Kid directly. It will impact The Kid directly. And as he reminded us, in the society that he abhors and seeks to escape, he is an adult and has the legal right to make this decision regardless of how we feel as his parents. Telling us was a courtesy, an opportunity for us to wrap our minds around what would happen. It’s not about what we did or didn’t do as parents: It’s about our kid testing it to see if it was good or not.
As I sit here and type this, I’m extremely calm. Not a false sense of calm either. There will be no meltdowns at work or mental health days. I won’t go bake cake and eat it because I’m worried. I understand one fundamental truth about life: The only thing within my control is me. No matter how much I hate his decision, this is his life and his choice and I accept it. I could commit him for insanity, but that would be me imposing my will on him. And he’d prove he wasn’t insane and disappear for real. Plus, I like to talk and deal with things and the tricky route seems downright… tricky.
Will I think about him? Of course! He’s my first-born kid. Will I worry? Probably. I know I’ll be concerned for that first month or so not knowing where he’ll be or even if he’s safe. Will I let it consume me? No. My life, in society, will still move forward and I choose to accept that over my child, who will and has, chosen his life experience over what I want for him. I refuse to fight him, but I don’t refuse to accept reality and reality is, right now, this will happen. And I understand the will of this particular teenager even if I don’t understand this particular teenager’s choice.
So… have a sip of wine and bear with me as I get back into the groove of blogging again.