Follow Up

 
I tried. I really thought I had him. But I didn’t play my hand the way I should have, my husband stayed cool as a cucumber, and now I won’t be getting the yellow Ipod I thought I could guilt him into letting me buy. Damn.
 
I took Cheyenne in for a haircut yesterday at a cheap place over in Norman where the people dress in all black and their eyes aren’t glazed over. $5.99 later, Cheyenne walks out of there feeling–and acting–like a million bucks. I’ll do almost anything to help her feel good about herself these days; I remember what it was like to be almost 13. She’s always begging me to change her name; apparently Cheyenne is THE ugliest name a parent could bestow upon a child and she’d like something a little more refined–"Rae", or maybe "Juliet" are the two she’s been tossing around. She’s extremely self-consciuos about her nose and from time to time will ask about the possibility of a nose job sometime before she turns 18. I tell her that unless she’s going into witness protection, the name change and the nose job will just have to wait until she moves out and can pay for said things on her own.
 
Cheyenne won’t hug Caleb these days. She won’t tell him "good-bye" in the morning, or "good-night" at bedtime, or "I love you" at any given point during the day. Caleb thinks it’s because she hates him (curse step-fatherhood!) but I think it’s just a funky stage. I can’t explain it, but there was a time when I felt weird hugging my dad–my real dad.
 
My sisters and I were what you’d call Momma’s Girls, all the way. My dad travelled a lot in the military and my mom and us just sort of did our own girly thing. When he was home, he’d retreat to his office to eat dinner alone and watch Star Trek, while us girls cackled over God-knows-what out in the kitchen. There were some things I talked to him about, and some things I talked to my mom about, but at 12, I don’t recall talking to him much at all. I was so moody; I didn’t know what to say to him, and the stuff I wanted to say I felt sure he wouldn’t understand.
 
It wasn’t until almost high school that we really started doing stuff together–he coached my softball team. He made me do yardwork, and when I was with my dad, it didn’t feel like a chore. While we were in Italy, he got me into running and I went to these Hash House Harrier thingies where we followed trails and chugged coke from bedpans afterwards. On Saturdays after softball he’d run around the park (which–so cool–was set inside an inactive volcano) and although I’d be sweating bullets in my uniform, and my feet would be killing me in those cleats, I’d follow him the whole way. In high school he came to all my track meets and my cross country races. There could have been a million other people cheering for me, but everytime I saw my dad running along the sidelines shouting for me at different spots, I’d run a little faster, and I felt on top of the world. As cheesy as it sounds, I remember the feeling of my heart absolutely soaring. I don’t know if I ever told him that, but I would look for him; I expected him to be there. I needed him to be there. And he always was.
 
I hope Caleb doesn’t give up with Cheyenne. She knows she’s always got me–that’s probably why she rolls her eyes so much–but a girl wants her dad, even if she doesn’t act like it. And Caleb’s the only one she’s got.
 
Alright, enough with this gooey sh—–shhhow of emotion.
 
Mia and Merrick both have hacking coughs, and Merrick is an absolute snot fountain. He’s at that wonderful age where separation anxiety is kicking in full force, and he screams bloody murder if I leave the room…or if I put him down and walk 2 feet away. It’s…lots of fun.
 
Mia has night terrors. It’s horrible, really, really horrible. Night terrors differ from nightmares in that although she’ll open her eyes and look straight at you, maybe even say few words (of course, half the time, they make no sense) she’s totally asleep. She screams and thrashes and will even get up and run around. It’s awful. It’s been going on for over a year, but just in the past few months they’ve been happening every. Single. Night. At least once a night, and I. Am. Tired.
 
I know, right? I should be compensated for all this with a yellow Ipod.
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About Toni

Mom. Wife. Artist. I take care of the kids and pretend to clean sometimes. I can cook spagetti and I have never been arrested. View all posts by Toni

2 responses to “Follow Up

  • Joell

    They must call them night terrors because they terrify the people who are watching the sleeping person in the midst of the night terror. WOW. Does she remember them when she wakes up?? Scary. And the exhaustion…I can’t imagine. You about gave me a tear today talking about your daddy…I am very close to my daddy. And I, too, keenly remember a period where I felt weird hugging my dad. And I totally understand what you men by feeling on top of the world knowing he was cheering for you. Give the awkward stage some time. Cheyenne will come around. And Caleb, based on your previous glowing blog about "the man", doesn’t sound the least bit like a guy who is going to give up on her!!

  • barnyardmama

    In my experience with teenagers that aren’t mine. . . they push you away to see if you’ll stick around. I would always keep a little bit of distance, but let kids know that i was there–that worked the best. I dont’ know about the Daddy thing, but I do know that teenagers are constatly going back and forth between wanting to be independent and being scared as hell of being independent. Sucks.Sorry about the night terrors. My brother used to have them and my parents would be up in the middle of the night trying to get him to snap out of them, which was no easy thing.

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