Thursday, April 23, 2009

Random Memories

In November 1985 I was a senior in High School. I was in the choir, and we had this big Veteran's Day concert with all the high school choirs in the school district, along with the 23rd Army band, at the Huntsman Center at the University of Utah. My older brother was in the band, and I was in the choir, so my mom came to the concert. My mom came to every concert. And there were a LOT of concerts. I seem to remember that she had three or four of my little brothers with her, and probably my little sister, too.

After the concert was over, I fooled around with my friends and just did whatever teenagers do when they're not really doing anything. I had come to the concert with a friend, and I was planning on getting a ride home from said friend. As I was galavanting around, I saw my mom standing there surrounded by little brothers and sisters, waiting for me. I don't remember exactly what was said, but something to the effect of "Where have you been? We've been waiting for you!" And me, being the selfish, self-centered teenager that I was (were you? Please tell me you were...) I didn't stop to think of how long they had been waiting there, or that they probably didn't know that I had already arranged for a ride home, and I snapped back with something rude and too loud. I didn't thank my mom for coming to my concert. (Did I ever thank her?) I didn't thank her and my cute little siblings for waiting around for me. I yelled at my mom because she yelled at me, and we started yelling and crying and the whole public spectacle ended with me running away while she called, "How are you going to get home?!"

By this point my ride had left. I, in my selfish, horrible pride, refused to go back and get a ride from my mother. I wandered around the Huntsman Center looking for anyone I knew who might be able to give me a ride home. I considered walking. In November with no coat late at night. (This was, unfortunately, in the days before cell phones. If I'd had a cell phone I would have called my little brother to come, or my boyfriend, or anyone. But I didn't have this option...) So fortunately, I came upon one of the band directors from another high school, someone I knew pretty well from a district orchestra I was in (Mr. Chatelain, for those of you who care). He asked me what on earth I was still doing there, wandering around alone. I, of course, burst into tears and blubbered something about missing my ride.

He offered to take me home, which I accepted, EXCEPT I didn't go home. I had him drop me off at my boyfriend's house. I refused to go home to my mother who I knew was mad at me, and that she hated me.

(2009 version--I refused to go home to my mother who was worried sick about me and probably cried her head off wondering where I was and what had EVER happened to her cute little girl. The one who used to never be able to sing "Mother I Love You" on Mother's Day because she loved her mommy so much that all she could do was stand there and cry while all the other children sang. The one who proudly wore all the dresses and jammies and double-knit polyester plaid pants that her mom made for her. The one she taught to sew, and read, and play the piano, and sing, and change diapers, and cuddle crying little brothers. THAT cute little girl.)

Eventually I had my boyfriend drive me home, because his parents wouldn't let us have sleepovers (can you EVEN believe it??) I would have stayed there and never told my mom where I was if his parents would have let us. Anyway, I went in the house and went straight to my room. I know my mom saw me come home, but I didn't speak to her. I was that kind of teenager.

Well, times have sure changed, haven't they?

SIDE NOTE: For those of you with young children, I would like to share an important lesson I learned a few years ago. Here it is:

There comes a point in your children's lives where THEY DO NOT LIKE you talking about them to other people. They resent you telling their stories in Relief Society. They HATE it when they find out you've written about them on your blog. Even though the lessons they are learning are important and Mom wants to share what she is learning from it all, BE CAREFUL.
This is me being very, very careful....


Perhaps I'll wrap up this post by admitting that yesterday I drove away from one of my children. Kicked said child out of the car and drove away screaming to myself (out loud, mind you. Not in my head. Out VERY loud). Cried my head off. Tried to rip the steering wheel off the car (thank goodness I don't have super-human strength or I would be in the market for a new car today...) And my heart was broken.

Sigh...I feel like I'm at that place in the woods, you know, the one we all stopped by on a snowy evening? The two roads are diverging, and I know which way I need to go. But I'm so desperately tired, and I think that right now, just for a while, I'm going to sit down and not go anywhere. Just catch my breath and try to gather strength for the next storm that I know is coming.

Oh, and Mom? Thanks for coming to my concerts.


Tami said...

Oh,Marianne. If we only had the wisdom of age when we were actually teenagers! And don't worry that now you are on the other side of the equation. I think we have to be in both places to understand how much Heavenly Father loves us. And he does. Love. You. I am so often just like my little girl throwing a fit because I want to do it "all by myself", when He is just patiently waiting for me to come ask for me. This scenario plays out several times a day with me as the parent and yet I still don't get it! Thank goodness we have eternity to try and get it right! I love you! Screaming teen or mother, you are one of my favorite people!

Tami said...

BTW, I just started a middleaged mommy blog. It is at Come one come all!

Caroldean said...

Been there done that!

In fact I remember having the same conversation with my mom at the same concert. We had a bus though so I got back to the school and then got a ride from there. It must be in the genes.

Just keep loving them and one day they will surprise you, at least that is what my older, wiser, sisters-in-law say.

Lee and Melody said...

Mom always did come to concerts, and I don't know if I ever thanked her either! Thanks, mom! And thanks, Sis for your postings. I have no experience whatsoever in this field, there's not much my kids do to give me heartache yet. So far they're sticking to headaches and backaches. Although I'm pretty sure I gave our mom all three, sometimes all at once. Be that as it may, I love you. And admire you. And miss you. And love you.
And love you.
And love you.

heath said...

I like what Tami said--we have to be in both places to understand Heavenly Father's love. Someday it will all be worth it, right? P.S.--I saw you from a distance in the Cougareat yesterday. We were with my husband's family, and in the chaos I didn't make it over to say hello. But I though to myself: "There's Marianne! I love Marianne!"

Tat said...

Just wanted to add that I was a selfish, self-centered teenager. Yes, I was.

The Blackham3 said...

{hugs} Marianne, I love you, and love that you matter what. Life is so unfair. Remember that you are A GREAT MOM!Your kids will thank you in 15 years for putting up with all the crap. Thanks for being so honest. really should write a book. You are an amazing writer!

Kendall said...

Ugh. Man-tears at 11:00 in the morning. What a disgrace.

Sis, you are amazing. Are you sure you don't want to move to Oregon? We love you. And I remember going to your concerts and being so excited to be the first to find you in the choir or band or orchestra and point you out to Mark or
Adam. I don't remember you yelling at Mom, though. I don't even remember myself yelling at Mom when I was a teenager . . . but I certainly remember her yelling at me (:o) Thank goodness for Moms and unconditional love. I love you Marianne!

Lainie said...

I think mommyhood makes us crazy. I mean loco. I had a night like that - crying and blubbering and not making any sense. And your sweet brother just listened and hugged me, sent me to bed, tucked me in and kissed me better. Thank goodness for wonderful husbands who "pick up the pieces" after the fall. I often feel like Humpty Dumpty. You're not alone. I love you Marianne. Thank you for being real!