Lead Balloon


Preparing for the worst.
November 24, 2008, 12:45 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

For some reason, my trips to malls or airports always make me want to take the time to write a blog post. It’s obviously because of the many different walks of life that you’ll see visiting a mall or airport. At the airport, I pick up, easily, three or four observations that I feel the need to share. At a mall, though….I become obsessed with my own disappointment with what will be “our future”…freakin’ teenagers.

Last weekend we made a trip to the mall so that Natalie could have her picture taken with Santa. Of course, she ended up having her picture taken with ME and Santa (they make the chairs big enough now that you can sit NEXT to Santa, and not on his lap, which is somewhat creepy for an adult in my opinion.) And before I get off the Santa photo subject, I must say…God, please do not make me one of those parents who uses poor Santa as a threat to my children. The family in front of us (two daughters – adorable) apparently use this scare tactic quite often. If I heard it once I heard it fifteen times…”Santa’s watching you. Look at him, he’s watching you. You better be good. Santa’s watching you.” Poor kids. I thought to myself, I hope they’re not ALSO Catholic. Santa-Christmas guilt and Catholic guilt must be hell to deal with later in life, in therapy.

So my observations while at the mall:

– Teenagers have no social skills or any way of communicating with people who are not their age. There are certainly exceptions, but this is my general observation.

– Teenagers will do a lot in the name of “non-conformity”, all while conforming to look exactly like one another. Example at the mall this weekend: four kids coming to the mall dressed in their Halloween costumes, a month after the holiday. All of their “costumes” were basically just a cape of some description. (This reminds me of Todd’s VERY TRUE observation around Halloween time — teenaged girls use Halloween as an excuse to dress slutty. Plain and simple.) In addition to the Halloween example, I saw several groups of girls — all wearing variations of the same exact outfit. Now, I KNOW that I did this same thing…Which is why I’m even more frustrated by seeing it.

– Speaking of sluts. As we were walking by various stores in the mall, I’d point to a mannequin in the window and say “What if Natalie dresses like THAT?” And Todd would say, “I will tell her she looks like a slut.” Who are they trying to lure into those stores? Horny boys? Girls who want to be sluts? Whores? If I was forced to do all of my shopping in only store windows, I would have to start shopping at some sort of HUNTING store so that I could make sure my body was adequately covered.

– Thankfully, there ARE good kids out there. The problem is, they’re hard to find.

This is just the beginning for me…I have a daughter who will, one day, be a teenager. And this worrying is just the tip of the iceberg for me. It started while I was pregnant. I worried all nine months that something would go wrong during the pregnancy or during childbirth. Then, the first year of her life I tracked all of her social and developmental milestones and worried that she was too far behind or ahead of a particular “curve”. And now, I will spend the next 15 or so years completely PARANOID that she will turn out to be “that girl”…that teenaged girl who thinks that dressing provocatively is the best way to get attention, who thinks that her own taste isn’t good enough – that she has to follow the styles of the masses, OR that she’ll try SO HARD to be different that she ends up just looking like an idiot.

Ugh.

And to think, I want more than one.

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