As a mom, I often feel conflicted. You see– I’m at that point where I’m ready for the kids to grow up and try out their own wings. But you also see– I’m not ready for them to grow up and try out their own wings. I don’t feel like I’ve prepared them well enough for the real world. Although, I will admit that some of that is NOT my fault… society hasn’t really prepared this group of teenagers to be adults. In a world where it seems that you don’t have to be on-time, dressed appropriately, and act like an adult who accepts the responsibility of their actions (the good and the bad without blaming others)… it just seems like everything I was taught, I wasn’t able to pass on because there was always that person who made the excuse for them. So, I’m conflicted. Possibly I sound like a crappy mother too… because I’m ready to give my kids that arm extension into the world. What do I mean by that? Baby steps. I’m ready for them to begin exploring the benefits and responsibility of being an adult. But really only within a short distance. I still feel that I need to be there to help while they learn to navigate without anyone.
Like today! Today I took Laura to her first doctor’s appointment as an adult. No, it wasn’t a REAL appointment… she didn’t have to see the actual doctor. But she needed her immunization for her senior year (in case you didn’t know… in Illinois it is required to have the meningitis vaccine on/before your senior year). So, essentially it was just a nurse visit. But it’s the first time since she turned 18 that she’s going to the doctor. Every visit before, I’ve had to be the one to check her in and supply my ID. I’ve had to agree that I was going to pay whatever insurance didn’t cover. It was me. But now, it’s her!
On a bit of a side note– I’ve learned that I have to step away from her when she’s doing adult things or I want to take over. When I took her to get her bank account by herself and when she got her own phone plan… I was there– but only if I was needed. It was the phone that I realized that I have to find myself something to occupy my time unless she needs me. So, yeah– I know that going forward.
Let’s get back to her first adult doctor’s appointment… I had already told her that as an adult, this visit would be mostly her. I would still be in the waiting room if she needed help with any of the information but it was time she figured it out. I gave her the insurance card with her name on it, in the car prior to walking into the office. Once we walked in, I went and sat down and let her do her thing. Guess what… she did it!! She did it very well too! The only part she struggled with is making another appointment (because she still has to have a ride there– and I still have to pull her out of school). Which really wasn’t bad– just learning how to respond to questions they ask when you are making a new appointment.
She even went to the back by herself. I had sent her a copy of her shot record so she could take it back with her. Next thing I know… she comes back out and she is good to go. We were just waiting for a copy to give to the school. While it is up to Laura to give that copy to her school nurses, I went ahead and emailed a copy to the school nurse in case she forgets to drop it off first thing in the morning. After all, she is still new at this adult-ing. But it is important that they actually get the record!
I know these seem like little things… but it’s all part of being an independent adult. I’m so proud of her. I’m thinking next up is going to be a tour of her alternative college (because her original college is more than likely shutting down).
I’m still going crazy– because I can’t have an adult child! I just can’t… have I really been raising kids for 18 years?!?!
Until next time— keep flying high!