Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Money can buy you happiness

Oh, okay. I'm lying. But money can alleviate a bunch of other horrors, I guess.

Maybe it's work that really does this; mine's been so crazy of late there's no time to spend worrying or wallowing. Which leaves me the drive time to have a breakdown. Not the smartest thing in the world.

So instead I'm counting all the ridiculous gobs of cash made this week, taking over another court for one of my clients.

What do you do when your kid's making the biggest mistake of her life? Do you tell her so, or just respect her enough to let her make her own bed?

I wish I knew.

This is exactly where my parents were almost 20 years ago with me. They let me make my own choice(and we all see how well that worked out.) Of course, this is all hindsight speaking with perfect pitch and clear-eyed vision. Hard to say where our relationship would be today had they even tried to stop me. I'd probably have hated them, and probably rightly so -- even knowing they had my best interest at heart.

Guess that's where I'm going with C... know she's throwing her life away with both hands, but I also know that she'll never realize it until after she does it. And that part of being her mom is walking this very fine line between respectful acceptance of her choices and seeming negligence. Yet another sublime paradox of living.

It feels like watching still another life whither away to nothing. You know, along with never seeing the inside of Drug Mart again, or watching another movie directed by Clint Eastwood, this feeling -- this overwhelming sense of loss and sorrow -- I could spend the rest of my life totally without having ever again, about anyone. Thanks very much.

A GED is certainly not what I envisioned seventeen years ago, laying in a hospital bed marveling at her perfect little toes and tiny form snugly wrapped in cotton. Nor was it the plan when they told us she had a genius IQ -- "off the charts." Now she's really going off the charts, and there's no way to even pull her back in, or toss her a floatation device.

She is, without question, both the smartest person I've ever met and, in this matter, the dumbest. She is also without question my daughter, with every possible meaning imagineable in that phrase. But mostly it means that I signed on to take the good, the bad and the indifferent, forever. My job is to love and support her -- and her choices -- no matter how perilous they may appear to the outside eye.

So I do.

But does everything have to explode all at once? Did she have to pick this month to suddenly become a crazy, rebellious delinquent with a boyfriend and the burning desire to become a high school dropout? It must be too much to ask for just one thing or person to play the whole 'sane and calm' thing with me right now.
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