Tuesday, November 22, 2011

#142 - Mama is Finally a Friend!

Having grown-up children is such a new experience for me. Since I am such a huge consumer of words...meaning...I'm a voracious reader, I should have been reading, long ago, about how to be a parent to an adult. It's sometimes more challenging than when the kids were little because I feel so parental, yet that stage is not wholly mine to embrace any longer. These days, it's more of being a friend --- the thing I dare NOT try to be while they were in the middle of growing up, THAT is the thing I must be to my daughters during this phase...a friend.

It's nice.

It's difficult.

It's hard to not have a room to send them to so I will know they are safe when I am petrified.

It's great to have two new beautiful friends, young friends, very young friends that I can't keep up with.

My oldest daughter Heather is engaged to be married to a nice young man who is trying to make his own mark in this world and doing a nice job of it.

They make a sweet couple. Heather is a determined young woman who is very intelligent, has a good heart and I love our long talks on the phone, just like I used to do with my own mother. Sometimes, Heather reminds me so much of myself. Did I mention that she's amazing?

The great thing is that I like her fiance Henry. And, let me tell you, this Mama is not easily won over. Ask Henry. He's paid his dues and he's hung in there and he's been so sweet to me in spite of my guarded attention. These days, if he and my daughter have an argument, I will, of course, chit-chat it up with my daughter, but in the end, I am also conscious of Henry's side of the story.

And my youngest daughter, Stefanie, she is such a fun friend to have as well. She is blessed to also have a sweet boyfriend.

The two of them are working on finishing their degrees. Brice, her boyfriend, is a guy who is always ready to light up a room with his smile and a contagious laugh. He's a lot of fun to be around. And, he's good to Stefie; he listens to her and really makes it known that she's a priority in his life. I like that about him because Stefie is a sweetie.

Yesterday, Stefie actually took me on a date to see "Breaking Dawn." Her and I had read all of the Twilight books and became fast fans of Stephanie Meyer's prose. We love her creativity and modern fairy tale style of writing. So, we love going to the movies and watching the latest motion picture version of the books we enjoyed. On the way to the movies, we stopped at Walgreens to buy some candy and a drink to smuggle into the moves. Yes, we are penny-pinchers as well. And we had a GREAT time at the movies together, even when the people about five rows below us brought in a BABY in a baby carrier. What?

Hey people...we had to PAY to get into this place to see this movie and to NOT hear the things we'd hear at home, such as barking dogs---ours and the neighbors --- the dishwasher in action, the doorbell ringing as the solicitor waits to try to sell something and DEFINITELY not a baby.

I had TWO babies of my own; I love babies, but I never took them to the movies with me so that they could interfere with someone else's time AWAY from their babies. But, before the movie began, Stefie and I ended up sitting through advertisements on the big screen and as we were whispering that we sure hope that baby doesn't start crying in the middle of the movie, my little Stefie gets a bright idea and pulls out her IPhone to show me something.

After a quick internet search, even though we could barely hear anything over the LOUD movie theater advertisements, she put her IPhone between us so she could show me, the old gal, a popular and very inappropriate YouTube gal, Jenna Marbles, as she did a particular post about an unwelcomed baby in her apartment. After getting over the shock of the "F" bombs throughout the video, I did think it was funny that Stefie found that particular blog post to pull up at that particular moment as we were sitting in the movie theater in that particular "baby" situation.

The horrible part we were watching this YouTube video and laughing hysterically at our situation with the baby a short distance away...the advertisements in the movie theater suddenly came to a complete STOP and the theater goes into dead silence just as Stefie's IPhone is screaming with Jenna Marbles imitating the sounds of a baby with "WAHHH, WAHHH, WAHHH" and some other choice words. We could not hit the screen of her IPhone to stop the sounds fast enough. It was as if we had a bright spot-light on our misdeed.

These are the moments when you know God has a sense of humor and you're hoping that the couple with the baby does too.

We finally get the IPhone's blaring SURROUND SOUND to shut off and we laughed even more hysterically at the discomfort we felt. I was ready for the couple with the baby to look backwards at us with double expressions that could kill. Believe me, I had my hands and fingers prepared to start pointing at Stefie as I said, "SHE did it!"

The terrible thing one would have known that we were watching a video...all it sounded like was as if someone behind them was sarcastically imitating the irritating side of a baby with the "WAHHH, WAHHH, WAHHH" screeching sounds. Someone of us.

Thankfully, we made it out of the movies alive. As a parent myself, I thought the young couple showed great restraint. Such maturity, except for the part about bringing a baby to a movie that cost us $20.00 to see.

Anyway, the baby DID start crying during one of the most crucial moments in the movie, but they did some fast responding to limit the crying so it wasn't that noticeable.

One day, I'll be surrounded by babies again. I love all the sounds of a baby, just not in a movie theater. Until then, I have a couple of great new friends to share a few shocking moments with because my kids and I know how to have a bit of fun together. I'm always ready for a good laugh. As a parent of adult children, I've learned to laugh a little harder and a little easier, even when one of my kiddos whips out a video with "F" bombs. I guess it's digestible because Stefie doesn't cuss whatsoever; she does not have what I call a "potty mouth syndrome."

However, if she did cuss these days, I guess my only recourse is to give the classic Mama-Says-You-Are-In-Trouble-Stare.

Otherwise, I can be friendly and give out unwelcomed lectures. At this stage, that is my favorite thing to do. Lectures. My daughters usually are good-natured about it. There are times when they are wise and know that they need to listen to what I have to say to them. Other times, they say, "I need to talk, no lectures, it's time to switch on the friend mode and leave the Mama mode in the distance."

Oh Lord. Brace yourself. Put on your "friend" hat because it's time to put away the bib.

Why didn't I read the books on being a parent of adult children? I'm winging it here! I'm inexperienced, but this part of growth in my life is a lot of fun!

And speaking of babies and being a daughters will be mothers one day and they better not ever take their baby to the movie theater. There might be a mother of grown children seated behind them who is all too eager to watch the movie without reminders of poopy diapers and spit-up. So, if you have a baby and want to see the movie, my advice is to wait until it comes out on DVD.


LindaG said...

We rarely took our babies to restaurants, and never into theaters.

Hope you all have a blessed Thanksgiving, Lana. ♥

Kelsie From Our Country Home said...

I am so glad you are enjoying your grown girls so much...I love the friends aspect of having a grown daughter and am enjoying having her back home again too.

We do not attend the movies very often (last time was about 6yrs ago) because the closest one is in the city and as you know...we are not...we did think about taking lil Sara to see Cars 2 but she is a very hyper child and not sure others would appreciate her disrupting the movie so will wait for it to be on PPV.

Congrates to the engaged couple.

Blessings Kelsie (the lady with the green egg hehe)

Farmchick said...

Congrats to the engaged couple. Such an exciting time for them! So nice to see that you are at a stage where you can be friends with your daughters. My daughter will be headed into teenagedom soon, so our real friendship is still a few years away!

Glynis said...

I love my grown up children. One has just given me my first grandchild. To see her in my baby's arms was overwhelming. The weddings of my eldest daughter and son were six weeks apart and it was an emotional time. Although I live thousands of miles away from them all, it is good to know they are all happy in life. Enjoy your time with your girls and the men in their lives. :)

luckybunny said...

Nice post :) I imagine this is a nice time in your role as mother, nice phase I should say :) Love the last picture! Adorable.

Lana at said...

Linda --- the baby in the theater was a tiny baby, probably about four months old. I took my kids to the movies...had a HORRIBLE experience with adorable Stefie when she was 3 yrs old as I sat in the movie theater with her, my oldest daughter, one of my best-friends, Julia, and her daughter, Jeannie. Stefie refused to sit still; I had to leave the theater for the main hall for her to run around because she was just not quite ready to sit at the movies. I tried. Julia, my friend, thought it was so funny. Her daughter was very close to Stefie and always wanted to hold her, like she was her own baby, but not for this movie! Jeannie was not willing to miss seeing Aladin for that little squirt! Thank God Stefie grew up and is able to sit still through a movie at 21 years of age.

Kelsie --- like you, we had a VERY LONG dry spot where we went for years without going to the movies. It was too expensive and we were so active as a family that movies just weren't something we did that often. These days, I really enjoy a good movie. It forces me to sit still for a bit and to focus on a movie, straight-forward. My kids are convinced that I have a touch of Attention Deficit, probably do, but that's what has kept our floors clean! Your Sara is probably like my 3 yrs old it was still a night-mare to take her to the movies. As for the engagement, my oldest, Heather, is very excited and very involved in the planning of her wedding so she can do everything her heart desires for this one big day in life. As for the green eggs, we are so interested in those fun eggs! We might have to get a few of those chicken breeds when we move so the kids in the family can have fun collecting the green GEMS!

Farmchick --- as for you entering teenagedoom...I have sympathy!! But, we made it through two girls with all of the hormones, the "I'm in love" moments and for us, keeping them involved heavily in dance kept them too busy to get into too much other kinds of trouble. My motto for teenagers is...KEEP THEM EXHAUSTED!! I do feel as if our sacrifice during these years to help the girls follow a few dreams prodded the girls to keep up the efforts in adulthood. Good thing cause mom and dad are worn out!

Glynis --- first of all, I have to say this time around that I LOVE your name! And you speaking about your daughter giving birth to your first grandchild and the vision of pure joy it provided...well, I can only imagine. And I don't know how you dealt with two weddings so close together. My oldest lives a good distance away, five hour drive one-way, it is a heartache because we enjoy hanging out together. However, once we move to our land, we'll have two hours cut off the drive --- it'll only be a three hour drive!

Luckybunny --- This is one of the best phases of being a mother, but I've said that all along, "I think THIS is the best stage of being a mom," and I'd say the same thing the following year. The dogs are sweet. The reddish dog is an offspring from my Howdy, ALL of them are so handsome. I have NO IDEA how we have ended up with all MALE Australian Shepherds. Crazy.

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

I don't remember last time I saw a movie. I just got to see Eclipse, so I suppose I'll get Breaking Dawn after it's out on dvd.

None of my babies were ever in movie theatres. I can't imagine even attempting it!

Anne Kimball said...

Hi Lana! I'm Anne from Bringing Borya Home at Just found your blog and I love it. I'm adding it to my follow list. I have a small hobby farm and I am learning my way through chickens one egg at a time.

Lana at said...

Lisa --- My youngest and I are so glad to get our chances to get away for some girl-only-time. It's always wonderful! And, I would not take my babies to the movie theater because I'd not torture myself that way! In my family, I'm the first one ready to babysit, everyone knows, if they want to go to the movies, bring the kids over and go enjoy the movie! If it's a kid movie, more power to them. I just hope the kids are better able to sit still than my Stefie was when she was 3 years old!! haha

Ann --- Thank you for adding me, I'll be over to see you as well! Having a small Hobby Farm seems like a dream. I am loving my chickens and my eggs!!! Same as you, one at a time! Preferable 4-5 per day though!!!


Melodie said...

I would have never taken my son to a theater when he was a baby...I would have had better manners! I think it would have been different if it were a children s movie and you would expect to hear a lot of kid noise.
Congratulations on that future son in law!

www, said...

Melodie --- I agree, but it is indeed a lot of fun going into a children's movie and hearing all of the mini-riot laughing all around! And, thanks for the congrats on the future son-in-law, he's a keeper. I never had a son, so I feel so blessed that both my daughters are dating such nice young men.