Last week we experienced a couple of significant moments in our family.?And while the temptation was there to freak totally out and lose it, I managed to squeak by and hold it all together.
First up: the teen lost his 2-month-old iPhone.
Yep. ?We “made him wait” for “sooooo long” to get an iPhone, and within two months it was gone.
Technically it was about 10% his fault and 90% the douchebag who stole the phone fault. ?But there was still some fault to be had in there, and he had to own up to it.
Tip to parents and kids: if your school gym comes with a locker AND a lock, it’s not there for decoration. ?Use it.
What we learned about lost phones is this:
You aren’t likely to get the back. ?#SadTromboneRingTone
We did what we could to make it hard on the thief. ?We filed a report with the school and the police. ?We turned on the lock feature on “Find My Phone” and we contacted our provider asking them to put a block on anyone trying to activate it. ?We turned the phone into a very expensive camera since it wasn’t going to be used for anything internet connected. ?At least, that’s how it was described to us, but I’m sure someone out there knows how to get around these issues easily.
The teen was upset, was concerned, was contrite, and is now in a perpetual state of boredom since he isn’t getting a replacement anytime soon. ?I can’t say I have much sympathy because he could have avoided this by keeping the phone locked up tight in the school lockers.
But ah well… it is what it is.
Part of the reason we aren’t replacing it: ?actions need to have consequences. ?Just because we “can” replace a $$$ phone, doesn’t mean we should, right? ?At least, that is how we are looking at it for now.
Lessons were learned all around.
Kid: pay attention to something valuable in your possession.
Parents: pay for the dang insurance on the dang phone. ?Yep, that’s right, we elected not to pay for it because we assumed he would lose it— and then it would be his fault. ?We never thought that someone at his school would steal it. ?Lawdy were we naive.
The good news on the parenting front is that neither of us hot headed adults freaked out. Not even a little bit. ?Is this progress? ?Maybe it’s hope that we will all survive the teen years? We shall see.
My other “proud I didn’t totally lose it” moment came when we put my oldest daughter on her first solo flight to visit Grandma.
She’s almost 11 and a great kid.
There’s only one small problem. ?She suffers from generalized anxiety disorder. ?What this means is that something on the average “concern” scale to your kid may send my child to her room in a fit of tears and doubt. ?It takes a lot of time and deep breathing and talking (loads of talking!) to bring her out of her anxiety attacks.
It can be crippling at times for her, and it’s heartbreaking to watch as her mother.
The usual way I handle things does not work with a child with GAD and I’ve had to scale back my typical responses with her.
This does not work. ?It makes things so much worse so we spend a lot of time talking things through and working out what the actual concern is, and finding ways to deal with them that she can accept.
So when my sister proposed flying her out to Texas by herself, I thought, no way, this one will get shut down immediately.
But my girl surprised me. ?She was willing to talk about it, learn about the process, and maybe even do it.
And then she DID IT.
She got on that plane with one last look of exasperation at her almost-but-not-quite-losing-it mother… and was off to Texas for a week.
She’s doing great.
I’m so proud of her.
So many people chimed in on my personal Facebook page sharing how it’s not that big a deal, they had done this themselves since they were young, etc. ?Trust me: I get it. ?I also flew my first solo flight when I was around 9-years-old, and it was totally fine.
But I wasn’t an anxious child. ?I wasn’t one to lose my confidence and be reduced to tears with a minor blip in plans.
I wasn’t my daughter.
This was a huge moment for her- and for me. ?I wondered if I was doing the right thing in allowing her to try this. ?What if she got on the plane, it took off, and for 2 hours she was trapped in her own personal hell that I couldn’t help her through? ?What kind of mother does that?
The kind that recognized that sometimes you have to let them, well, fly on their own. ?Right?
Ps- She’s having a wonderful time and only said she missed us once, which is HUGE.
Patty Holliday is the owner and creator of all things No-Guilt Universe. As a lifelong fangirl and pop culture connoisseur, she’s been creating online since 2009. You can find her work at No-Guilt Disney.com, No-Guilt Fangirl.com, No-Guilt Life, and as host of the top-rated No-Guilt Disney Podcast.