A couple of days ago, I saw a lot of posts on social media about National Daughter Day - so many beautiful moms celebrating so many beautiful daughters. I have a confession to make. I didn’t post one of my daughter. I also didn’t feel much like gushing about what a great girl she is and how much I love her. That made me feel extremely guilty, like maybe I don’t love my daughter enough.
Truth is, I do love her. Always have. Always will. But right now I’m having a hard time liking her. See, she’s a teen. Well, truth be told, she’s not quite a teen but she’s acting enough like one these days that it’s making it extremely difficult to want to be around her. She’s cranky, sassy, mean, short, curt and completely, if I’m being honest, rude and disrespectful. She yells at me, closes her door in my face and, in general, wants nothing to do with me.
It hurts and it’s tough. At times she gets her phone and screen privileges taken away but, sometimes, I just take a deep breath and remind myself that I’m in this for the long haul. Today in a journal that I’m keeping for her, I wrote this and prayed it most fervently for myself:
Praying that the way I respond to you, despite your “meaness” would be a way to preach the Gospel to you. Also praying that I wouldn’t be a doormat when I need to be firm. Help me to find that balance, Lord.
Anyway, I guess this is another case of being gracious with myself and realizing I don’t always have to have all the answers. It's also okay if I don't like my children at certain stages of their life. I don't have to like them to love them. Loving them is a choice and something that as an adult I have to practice every day - even when they hurt me, even when they are less than their best toward me.
So for any mom out there who is feeling the way I do, you're not alone. Hang in there. I have faith that better days are ahead for my daughter and myself. I have faith that in the future, we will be close again, find a rhythm and genuinely want to spend time together. May God grant it for Jesus sake. Amen. And amen.