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An Educator’s Wisdom on Teenage Daughters

Quarantine is hard. “Can we go somewhere today?” seems to be the theme of our lives. It’s the equivalent of, “Are we there yet?” Luckily, I have two higher education degrees in child development. Therefore, in theory, I am highly qualified to raise children and share my experience with you. Right?

I am fully aware of what life is like right now, but I’ve almost forgotten what my daughters are like during typical times. Reviewing past social media posts, I was reminded of some beautiful truths about teenage daughters. Allow me to share these with you, followed by the post that inspired each revelation.

1. They’re never embarrassed by you.

Abby has friends over and they'll be watching a movie tonight.
"Mom, if you start crying during the movie, you'll need to leave the room. No one wants to see their friend's mom crying. You can go watch it on my kindle in your bedroom. I mean it. No crying in front of my friends."

2. They take an interest in your job:

Teen: Hey, Mom! How did teaching go today?
Me: Good! We watched a film.
Teen: So....basically, you pressed play?

3. They’re proud of your professionalism.

Hannah’s class was talking about future career options.
Teacher: Well, there aren’t many jobs that will let you sit home in your pajamas all day.
Hannah: My mom has that job!
Teacher: ??
Hannah: She works online.
Teacher: Well she at least has to wear a professional shirt, since they probably see her top half.
Hannah: Um, no. Usually just pajamas.

4. They teach you new things.

This is what happens when your mom (me) gets her first smart phone.
I'm pressing buttons, and suddenly Abby's voice comes over the phone.
-Abby! I called you on accident!
-Okay, then hang up.
-How do I hang up?
-You press the red hang up button.
-There is no red hang up button.
-Then press the home button and then the red hang up button.
At this point, I suddenly realize I can see her on the screen.
-Hey, Baby! I can see you! It's me!
And child hangs up on me.

5. They take responsibility for their actions.

A conversation with my teenage daughter as she agonized over whether or not to chop off her hair:
-I can't decide. Mom, you choose!
-Nope. You'll blame me if you don't like it.
-Well, that's the point. I don't want to blame myself!

6. They care about your well-being.

I needed to feed my friend's dogs.
-Girls, are you coming with me to feed the dogs?
-Do we have to?
-No, but if I get mauled to death, you'll forever feel guilty!
-Okay, we'll stay here. We're putting on makeup.
-Good luck finding another mom as awesome as me.
-Okay, thanks! Bye!

7. They respect your elderly status.

Hannah is now adjusting her vocabulary for my advanced age. After she used the phrase, “Hashtag multitasking,” she followed with, “Oh, sorry Mom. That means pound sign multitasking.”

8. They network well.

The instructions for Hannah’s fundraiser state, "Name 20 people that you could talk with about your sales!"
She writes:
1. Right neighbor
2. Left neighbor
3. My dog

9. They like it when you wear similar clothing.

Shopping with the teen. 
-No shirts where your belly shows. 
-I know, Mom. 
-I'm serious. 
-I know, Mom. 
-You get something that shows your belly and I'll get something that shows mine. 
-Mom, no!
-Yep. And I'll walk you all around town in our matching belly shirts. 
-MOM. NO!!

10. They appreciate the beauty of nature.

Teen: Are you taking pictures tomorrow?
Me: When we go to the Grand Canyon? Yes. 
Teen: I'll need to put curlers in my hair tonight.
Me: Usually when people take pictures at the Grand Canyon, the focus is the Grand Canyon, not your hair. 
Teen: I don't know about that. Where are the curlers?

I hope my wealth of knowledge inspires you during this time of social distancing. Luckily, I’m an avid learner. I look forward to multiplying my wisdom for years to come.

Ashford University/Bachelor of Arts in Early Childhood Education

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