Jun 04 2009
I remember it like it was yesterday. Aaron and his girlfriend were sitting in the living room laughing, giggling and enjoying a pizza. I did happen to notice that my boy was eating mushrooms on that pizza, which up until her arrival in his life, he “despised!” This goes along with shaving, combing his hair and putting on a clean shirt. All things that he didn’t feel the need to do until she entered his life.
Today it all changed. I don’t know what happened, but Aaron got a phone call around noon from his girlfriend. I don’t know what she was saying, but he was extremely frustrated and could hardly get a word in. Some fragments I caught were:
“But, you won’t let me talk…”
“I didn’t say that, she’s lying to you…”
“Why don’t you believe me?”
This went on for some forty minutes. As you know, the first few “magical” weeks of an adolescent relationship can be, for lack of a better word, nauseating for those of us who have to witness it. The kids float through the house on a pink cloud with a goofy grin on their face. When asked what they are so happy about, they reply, as if you should have known, “It’s our ninth day, fourth hour anniversary.”
As a parent and an adult, i.e., one who lives in the real world, you know that they eventually will crash and burn; you just hope you are there to help pick up the pieces.
Well, that phone call was it. For forty minutes my son sat on that phone and got gutted like a trout. At one point, I was walking by and our eyes met, and I noticed tears beginning to build up. He was looking at me for, I don’t know, something to help ease his pain. This was one of those rare moments where the omniscient teen doesn’t have an answer. So I delved deep into the recesses of my brain. All my years on this earth. So many relationships. Twenty two years of marriage.
I had nothing.
When I realized this, I thought how funny that was. And I started laughing – that “laughing in church” phenomenon when you know you’re not supposed to. The thought came to my mind to ask, “What anniversary you on now, Romantic Man?” I was laughing so hard, I had to take a knee.
I apologized when he got off the phone. I told him I was laughing because I knew I didn’t have much to tell him. I knew that telling him “this will pass” would be meaningless. So I just told him that relationships go up and down. That they are not for the faint of heart. I congratulated him on entering the fray. I encouraged him to trust that God had a plan for him. That this wasn’t the end, just the beginning of a lifetime of learning about women and how to be in a relationship. I encouraged him to “enjoy the ride.” I told him, “this will pass.” (I couldn’t help myself.) Finally, I then told him the one thing I could really say with authority… that I love him and am proud of him.
Then my wife yelled for me from the kitchen… clearly about something I should or shouldn’t have done. I exchanged a sheepish look with Aaron and said, “Looks like it’s my turn, pal.”
Do you, or did you, have a teen in love at home? Were you a teen in love? What’s your story?