Thursday, January 19, 2006

The big, green truck

Counting down the days...20, 19, 18, 17, 16, 15, 14.... It is coming.

On February 2nd, my daughter turns 15, and here in Colorado a fifteenth birthday is all it takes to get a driver's permit. A DRIVER'S PERMIT!

This is the same little girl who regularly falls down the stairs and is well-known for getting miscellaneous bumps and bruises because she is more-than-a-little clumsy. She also claims to want to be an agressive-driver (it's assertive, Honey) and won't waste her time waiting for people who can't make a decision at a stop-sign? If I give this information to the people at the DMV, will they consider it?

What is a mommy to do?

Well, this mommy talked to the daddy and we have a plan, we will allow her to drive this:

Yes, the green-beast will be Emily's prefered form of transport. Not only will it cost her upwards of $5.00 to go anywhere in town, but if she proves to be accident prone she will be protected by a solid steel Chevy cage. An added bonus is that everytime she drives the green-beast, she will exit the vehicle smelling like gasoline, a smell guaranteed to repel members of the opposite-sex, even if she is cute! (I'll bet you think that I am joking!)

You know, as a parent, it is all about safety. It starts with safety-gates blocking the stairs when they are babies and it culminates in massive, green trucks when they become adorable teenagers. Somehow the safety-gates left me feeling more secure about her welfare.

In my 17 years as a mommy, here is what I have learned: The whole time you have kids, people make statements like, "Enjoy them while they are young, while they still need you", and, "They grow up so fast". And in response you think, "This is taking forever, will I ever have a life of my own?" Well, ladies, the answer is "Yes", you will. It will come upon you when you least expect it, our even want it. The time will come when you will have to loosen your grip, by small degrees, and set them free. That is the point of being a parent.

In light of this, here is my advice: Enjoy everything about your kids. Today. The messes, the arguing, the crying, the endless training. Because someday they won't need you to take care of every detail of their life. Those little rug-rats sprinting around your house leaving fingerprints on the furniture and yelling "I'm done" from the bathroom will be all grown-up one day. And then you will have to hand them the keys to the big, green truck.