I sit here and watch the Grammy’s this evening with moments of feeling in touch and other moments when I have no idea what is going on. I feel that this puts me in the category of marginally cool but not completely off the deep end. As a generally responsible adult and parent of a seven year old, should I really know who dangermau5 is? I doubt it. My son loves watching these over the top award shows. He gets into this crazy dancing thing when he recognizes some marginal rap song that he has heard. During these times, I can see him already bumping up against the cusp of teenagedom. He asks a lot of questions. We ended up having a discussion about Chris Brown and Rihanna. He is of the generation that thinks that you can find anything on the internet. I am unsure that we do anything to disavow him of this.
When I have these types of serious conversations with my son, I sometimes get a bit spooked. I realize that I have this small, not yet fully formed person on my hands. Everything that he will be and that he will become will be based on what goes on in his life, his school; the things that we do and don’t do as parents. It can be particularly daunting especially when you are forced to share these decisions with the person you chose to actually make this child with. You realize that, you cannot be totally in control. Parenting, when raising a child within a familial relationship, is not a monarchy or dictatorship, it is purely democratic. Sometimes that is hard to live by. It is sometimes especially hard for me, as an avowed control freak.
I ran into the issue today of feeling disappointed with a particular outcome involving my democratic partner in child rearing. I found it difficult to be critical about what had happened but I also did not want my son to think that what happened today was something that he should emulate. The line was so fine that I abdicated. I know, on reflection, that there were appropriate things that I could have said; to handle it better. But I didn’t. This is a problem that I have. The answer comes to me but it comes much too late. On the spot, when it counts, it is not there. It is why I can not be a lobbyist. I need time to ruminate. To steep. To think and to formulate. I am no good on the spot. Hopefully this is not something that will preclude me from being able to do the right thing, the timely thing for my son, no matter what the situation. I have had seven years to practice and try to get it right; hopefully it won’t take another seven to do so.