Saturday, December 18, 2010

Take the Time to Look for the Essence of Your Teen

A lot of admissions-related news right now focuses on early decision and application procrastination.

Let's take a break from all of the college stuff and just spend some time marveling about our teens. I know that isn't easy, sometimes, when they don't accomplish tasks in our time frame, or don't clean their rooms as requested, or get a disappointing grade. It's time to take a few minutes to look at our teens, without the layers of our self-imposed expectations.

I think that if we are honest, most of us will be pretty proud and amazed that we have such great kids. We'll each find a different child after we've stripped away those things, that 10 or 50 years from now, just won't matter.

When I do this, I see a daughter who has good friends of all ages; is kind to children; enjoys music and wants to make it a part of her life beyond high school; can hold her own in a conversation with adults; has wonderful enthusiasms that make her happy; perseveres despite setbacks, and does so with a positive attitude; loves family traditions, particularly those related to holidays.

Here's to our teens! Here's to remembering what is really important, and also being understanding -- to ourselves -- when we revert to the traditional nagging parent. Of course, that is behavior we will try to overcome in 2011 even if we know it's impossible.

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