Every family has something they get dysfunctional about. Maybe it’s grief, or maybe it’s money, or maybe it’s work or rage or alcoholism.
For my family, it’s a discomfort that comes from unknown situations. Unfortunately, with a teen, we get into a lot of unknown situations.
Last night was ‘parent’s get to visit night’ at the high school. Groups and clubs had set up booths. The vice principal was handing out schedules. There was a pep rally going on in the the quad.
As usual, I did not want to talk to anybody. That’s my way. Rob is my voice in public. He brings the people and then I can talk. But, Rob wasn’t talking to anybody. And, Sydney was sulking as far away from us as she could possibly stand. And, even though we asked for information a couple of times, we had a really hard time getting it.
This made me more frustrated than I already was made by my inability to open my mouth to strangers. We walked the perimeter. I tried to get Sydney to join in and participate, if for no other reason than to give me a reason to speak. Rob also tried. And, that made Sydney sulk even more.
I was ready to leave. I sat on a bench.
Rob tried to be funny and to laugh. And, I sulked. And, he wouldn’t leave.
And, the whole time, if you looked at us from the outside, you wouldn’t know anything was going on, other than a family waiting for something to happen and not knowing exactly what it will be, and therefore not knowing if it’s started or not.
Okay, so this is where the night changes. This is where I realize what makes our family function in the unknown, when we are uncomfortable. We needed a fourth. And, we found a fourth in one of Sydney’s friend’s Mother. L. is a different bird. She is also an aquarian, but without my shyness. But, still very reserved. She gave us the courage to walk the booths again the way they were supposed to be walked through.
With her, we found out about the programs designed to help students prepare for college. With her, we met the coaches for basketball and volleyball. With her, Rob began to speak and I pointed things out because I have the quick and attentive eyes and Rob talked to the people and we shared information with L. and Sydney had someone to show off her maturity to. We bought T-shirts and Sydney signed up for thespians and photojournalism. We found out the gym is open all summer with coach supervised group workouts.
But, we couldn’t do it alone. We just didn’t know what to do in that situation.
No family is a vacuum. Every family has things that make it not work…that turn it into a hot mess. Ours just happens to be the unknown. And, maybe it’s more about me than it is about them. Whatever. Don’t know if I can change this. Don’t know if I want to try. I like us being a bit naive and surprised. It’s been this way for at least the 5 years we’ve had Sydney.
Kids change things.
Everybody have a great Thursday. Lane