mom of teens

As if learning to not care about what others think about you wasn’t stressful enough, add being a mom to 2 teenagers. I worry about what my kids think of me because I want to be a cool mom! I want to be that companion they can go to whenever and wherever. I want to support and encourage their every endeavor, foster every change. As my children grow, I feel like the timer speeds up on how much longer they have until they’re adults – makes me super emo tbh!

Becoming a mom was not completely new to me. As a parental child, I was taught to mother based on how my own mother parents. I memorized the good things and the good of the bad things, and left what I did not want to even exist in my home. Let’s say, elimination was vast majority, so there I was learning new things. Learning how to parent, have patience, not beat myself up because I fell asleep while feeding, etc. all of this was totally new for me. I went through postpartum depression with both my children. I could not convince myself to believe that I would be a good mom given my upbringing. A mental mind f&*^ as per usual, get out of your thoughts Tiff!

I remember being embarrassed in my marriage because I didn’t know if my husband was going to leave me if:

  • I allowed my mental health to control me instead of taking this opportunity to focus on our new babies
  • Couldn’t cut it without making the same mistakes my parents made
  • Ultimately failing my husband (in this order)

Distorted thinking. Hush, quiet, into the vault you go because none of those thoughts are true, accurate and valid. Speaking of distorted thoughts, for which I still have, I am super grateful for my therapist because she is providing me tools that are working for me, and this is a first (I just entered my late 30s). I never had much luck with therapy, antidepressants, sleep medication, stimulants, even though my doctor’s kept throwing that shit at me like candy because of childhood trauma.

My Family, Fall 2020

What’s beautiful about my boys is how they show me unconditional and love. My younger son has this habit of randomly approaching me and saying, “You know what you need? A good luck hug”. His hugs and that embrace is something that renews my energy – it motivates me. Some days are tough being a mom and his hugs always arrive at just the right moment.

My older son keeps tabs on me. He’s not much of a talker, but he always knows where I am. If he doesn’t, he will find out. He’s an old soul. Eager to learn yet subtle in his approach. He prefers habit, minimal change and staying home playing video gams.

As parents, we beat ourselves up constantly thinking about how we can be the perfect parent. That’s not real life, so please stop doing it if you do. Life is messy, including the good, bad and the ugly. Everyday we wake up is another opportunity for progress not perfection. One thing I promised myself I would never do was give up on my children. I never want them to feel abandoned.

Moms of Teens, Parents of Teens, Dads of Teens, Guardians and Grandparents of Teens, we’re in this together. The teenage phase of Parenting requires the utmost patience. Remember when I spoke about Patience earlier, yeah – I have none. I learned through trial and trial and error and error, lol. Word to the wise, don’t take the things they say and/or do seriously. In 5 minutes, they’ll be looking for you wondering what’s for dinner. I promise. I’m convinced that during the teenage years, their short term memory is almost nonexistent, just kidding. Selective hearing though IS a thing, and it’s super annoying!

Rant over, good night amigos/amigas!

Letter to my Son excerpt…

Yesterday, my first born son turned 13 years old. It was such a good time shared between the four of us. Though this was now how we planned on spending it quarantined, it was awesome to just get out of our respective offices and be together – in the moment. I love my boys. I have a unique relationship with my first born son. My son understands me at my worst and, often times, helps redirect me. My son has literally told me before, “mom, it’s not a big deal”, and I’ve looked right at him and let a huge sigh out before I replied, “you’re right, it’s not”. I am not ashamed to admit this because as a mother, I worry a lot. Heck, as a Parent – we all worry!

May you always know how much I love you. I was told I would never get pregnant because of how many women issues I had. You are a blessing to my life, both my babies are. I love you so much, and I am grateful for you because you have made me a better woman, a better friend and a better wife to your dad. I never realized how much #mentalhealth stuff I needed to sort out before having kids. No matter how you plan life, life has its own plan. I’m relieved it happened that way, because through raising you I have identified the areas I want to work on myself.

You cut veggies like a Champ! When I’m cooking dinner, I always appreciate how much I can count on you if my veggies are still whole. When your birthday needs help leveling up in his video game or cooking his own food, you opt to come right away and help him out. Your leadership is evident and I am so proud of you and love the bond you and your brother share.

Now that you’re 13, an official QuaranTEEN, I admit that I am nervous. Society is so different compared to when I was growing up, add a Pandemic and Homeschool to that. I have faith that you will do amazing this school year. You will always have a path for you to accomplish your goals and live your best life. Thank you for being who you are. Thank you for being so good to me. I love you and I am grateful for you as a blessing of 2.

Happy 13th Birthday to my baby boy, I love you today, forever and always.