This is not about Christmas. It is about life with a teenager, which takes far more energy.

December 24, 2014

I don’t remember the first thing I said to my son this morning.
The second thing was- (and my delivery might have just a little bit hostile)- “I don’t like that when you take that tone with me.”

Colin proceeded to point out that he didn’t appreciate the tone I used when I spoke to him. He used different words, I’m pretty sure he jumped over the line from hostile to angry in about three seconds.

Moments later, f bombs flew. Doors were slammed. Sophie The Kindest of Canines hid in the closet. Coffee was spilled all over the table, though that was either collateral damage or me being a klutz.

I retreated downstairs. Sprawled on the bed. Tried to figure out if I should I apply make up or if there might be a post battle “what the hell am I doing wrong” reaction resulting in pink tear trails down my cheeks and mascara residue- a look that only worked in London 30 years ago. London is very far away from my bedroom and thirty years ago I wasn’t crying much or wearing mascara.

Colin came downstairs. Fell back on the bed. His head found my shoulder. For a moment we both looked at the ceiling.
I really need to wash my ceiling. I don’t even know what color it’s supposed to be.

He reached for my hand. I squeezed his hand. Without looking away from the ceiling, and I don’t know what the dirty ceiling made him think about , but it did’t seem to be a good time to ask, he said- ” I love you, mom.”

I looked over at him. He didn’t look back. I think he was waiting for something.

“I love you too,” I answered.

I could feel his body relax. He took a deep breath. He rolled over, towards me. “Mom, I think I missed the bus.”

I suggested he run very fast to the bus stop.

I remember all of that, from the way his voice sounded, how long it took him to come downstairs, the feel of his hand in mine when he reached for me, and which spots on the ceiling need the most work, and I have no idea what started it all.

Not a /:()$& clue.

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