Resolution update

So, I'm thinking that Friday is a good day to review my resolutions. It's the last day of the work week and the schedule gets kind of wonky on the weekends

1. Lose 15 pounds. Down 2 pounds in the first week. Doesn't sound like a lot, but since I'm also working out, I'm moving weight around so the weight tends to come off slowly while the belly comes off pretty fast. And, that's a good thing because I was down to two pair of jeans that would button on New Year's eve.

2. Finish unfinished projects. I am ashamed of how many unfinished projects there were, including things that were finished enough to be in use. I started with the quilts that go on the living room walls. I had never put sleeves or labels on them. I've made three sleeves and gotten one on the quilt. Course, I had to put that one on twice, and think I should get credit for two. The instructions I was using for the sleeves would be perfect for the substantial dowels they use in quilt shows, but on my pencil thin rods, the sleeve stuck up an inch above the quilt. So, off it came and back on, better. I've also just about finished Sydney's pillow shams. Everything after that for her room should go pretty quickly until I get to the bedskirt.

3. Spend more time with the family. We're back full speed on math homework, so while I get dinner ready every night, Sydney practices her critical thinking on math problems. There's been quite a bit of playing while we do that, and last night I had to explain that even though we were playing, we were still learning, so don't take it too far. After dishes, instead of going into the sewing room, I'm in the living room handsewing sleeves on quilts.

We're still having trouble with trust and rules. Something has got to break because we thought we'd gotten through to her over the holidays, but I discovered this morning that we still haven't. I don't know if this child will ever be trustworthy. So, we're faced with the dilemma of total crackdown such that there is no opportunity to get away with anything, or just letting it slide. It's so hard for us to know where to draw the line. I mean, for cryin' out loud she's only 12. If we can't trust her now, what will we do when she's 16?????

And, it's so unfair. She gets caught doing something and gets consequence, then uses the fact that we gave her consequences as an excuse for lying about whatever else she's up to. This would have been so much easier if we'd had her since birth.

Rule breaking, consequences, crying, anger; that's how I gained so much weight in the first place and it's why I was spending so much time in the sewing room. Those two resolutions are going to be harder to keep than I thought.

Have a great Friday. I have a pile of work that is as frightful as the weather outside. But, next on the todo list is to spend $45k of the company's money. Spending money always makes me happy.



Hazel said...

As hard as it may be to believe Sidney's behavior is normal don't beat yourself up about it .I have three grown children there favorite saying when teens was " you don't trust me " My answer was always the same .I don't trust any teenager .I have news for you it makes no difference if you are the birth parent or not LOL .Your doing a great job with Sidney .By the way all three of my children are grown professional adults with families of their own I'm sure Sidney will turn out the same way .as the kids say "cut yourself some slack and pick your battles wisely "LOL
Can I help you spend that money ,that must be the highlight of your job .

CC said...

As Hazel says, pick your battles wisely. But I know one thing, raising a daughter is not easy.. I've watched him struggle with consequences, her not always being truthful for no teen wants to get into trouble..it's just hard to raise a daughter. Cut yourself some slack and don't be so hard on yourself. She will try your patience till it reaches the breaking point and beyond..so just hang in there..and know that with all that teen anger,etc. and trying to find herself..deep down,she loves you. Hold onto that..you're doing a good job and the best you can. It's all anyone can do.

Shirleymac said...

I'm with CC. You're doing a great job. Teens are constantly pushing boundaries to see how far they can push. I'm 58 years old and I can still remember a time when I was 14 that I said to my mom "You always told me if I told the truth I wouldn't get in trouble right?" She said "Right." So I told her how our back screen door got broken. It was an accident, my friend leaned against it. But when I told her that I got in trouble cause it was my friend who broke it. So do choose your battles wisely and be consistent. Getting in trouble after being told I wouldn't, and for such an innocent thing, I mean I didn't shoplift or something, meant that in the future I was more afraid to offer information that I wasn't asked for directly. It's hard to stick to the rules but it's important to do it. Believe it or not kids feel more secure knowing there are rules. They may not appreciate it now but they will in the future.

Quilting in My Pyjamas said...

I haven’t been here long so I hope you don’t mind me “verbalizing” a few random thoughts about things you brought up in your post.

I don’t know much about the situation with Sydney’s past family and emotional experiences, but I would imagine some of what you’re seeing relates to her previous home situation. Some of her responses are to test that you love her, some are hardwired in as defence mechanisms and some are plain teen bloody-minded-ness. The difficulty for you is in knowing which is which!

With all teens you really do have to pick your battles. You have to learn to let some things slide. If you don’t your parenting life will become all about making sure she is keeping to the rules and the nature of kids is that they like to at least bend the rules. Nobody wins in this situation.

Have really clear boundaries about the things that are non-negotiables. Dopn't have too many non negotiables. Have natural consequences for other things. Talk to your family therapist . Sure you’re parenting a teen – but never forget you’re parenting a teen who is quite likely to be carrying emotional baggage far beyond her years.

With parenting you do the best you can – and then try not to worry about the rest!

Quilting in My Pyjamas said...

And I really need to learn to spell check my posts before I hit send!

Shasta said...

Parenting certainly is tough, isn't it. It might have made things easier if you had her all along, just because she would have known some rules ahead of time, but parenting a teenager is tough anyway. I think that if a child lies, they get two punishments, one for the act itself, and a second one for lying. If you let things slide or aren't consistent, it makes it harder for her to learn the rules. Just make sure the punishment is realistic - simply telling her not to do something, others entail talking to her about it might be enough sometimes, and try to keep them as natural as possible - if you don't put your clothes down the laundry chute, they don't get washed.