The Hormone HouseA Story by Carole
Anybody that has teenagers knows about the "H" word. This story is what you call half-n-half. One part fiction and one part non-fiction. :-)
Two-thousand-and-three marked a unique time in history for our family. By a unanimous vote we decided to invest in a brightly colored neon sign for the front yard. It wasn’t the typical plastic “Beware of Dog” or “No Soliciting” sign in black with orange letters. We had determined, this sign had to be something special. It read in big bold flashing lime green, orange, yellow, pink and blue letters: “The Hormone House. Beware! Three Hormonal Teenagers and One Menopausal Woman Inside!" It had this disclaimer flashing underneath: Enter at your own risk!
Good old Forest Gump seemed to have a handle on a mighty truth: "Life is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get!" I wonder if he had any inside knowledge on hormones? You never know when the old hormones are going to flair up. They could very well be likened to riding an emotional roller coaster. That drop can surprise the heck out of you causing an adrenaline rush that will make your hair stand on end. Up one minute and down the next.
When it came to our teenagers, I had done everything I could think of to ward off nasty attitudes, the proverbial blame game, and the know-it-all entrapment. I talked until I was blue in the face. I am not sure if the blue was lack of oxygen to the brain, or boil over from anger. Whatever the case, I felt like I was talking to three brick walls, and adding me in the mix, made four. I just couldn't seem to get through the bricks and morter, no matter how hard I tried.
I had fallen prey to the “Perfect Parent Syndrome” many years prior to this and I was still determined to do EVERYTHING right, menopausal or not. I wonder if I'd set my sights too high? I had heard a multitude of stories from other parents. Some of them sounded fairly good; maybe even believable. Now, I am not so sure. “I just chose not to believe for problems with my teenagers, and so I didn’t have any,” “My teenagers were perfect angels,” and yada, yada, yada. Guilt travels fast and was hitting me at ninety mph. Was I reaping some sort of punishment or pay back from something I had done in the past that I had long since forgotten? I wondered. My teenagers were not perfect angels and I tried to believe they wouldn’t be like half of the teenagers on the planet, but…they were pretty much normal teenagers…the stuff we all hear about.
Hmmm...that's pretty darned accurate. Or…what about this one? "Teenagers: Tired of being harassed by your parents? ACT NOW!! Move out, get a job, pay your own way, while you still know everything!" Sounds like a near perfect description of teenagers to me! We threatened each of them on several occasions; gave them the normal ultimatums… Did just about everything we could think of, short of putting a suitcase with all of their personal belongings on the front porch or dropping them off at the bus station while quickly hurling their bags to the ground behind them. There was more than one occasion that we grounded them for the rest of their lives, demanded respect, and gave them curfews while telling them, Nothing good happens after midnight, you know. (We adjusted their curfews to the appropriate teenager and their sibling ranking.)
Being monstrously menopausal myself didn’t help matters. The hot flashes were in full swing. Who in their right mind visits a sauna at 3:00 a.m. in the morning? Hello?! The brain fog and the memory loss was at an all time high. I depleted numerous supplies of Gingko and I still forgot what I was going to say mid-sentence, while embarrassingly muttering “A…a…I’m sorry, I-a just lost my train of thought.”
The adjectives the kids were using only compounded my confusion. “That’s tight!” I have a rubber jar opener for stuff like that, I'd mutter under my breath. It’s in the drawer next to the frig. Or, “Did you see the trick he just did on the skate board? That’s BAD!” “Must they confuse their elders,” I wondered? Bad to me still means B-A-D. You know, NOT GOOD. BAD! Or, “That’s killer!” “Don’t they still lock those guys up for God’s sake?” I asked discustingly. Must you add to the shroud of brain fog already infiltrating my muddled brain? Talk
The brightly colored sign flashing “The Hormone House,” was sold at a garage sale shortly after my oldest son turned twenty and life in our household began to calm down. It went for a pretty penny. Evidently the Hansen's were as amused as we were when we bought it at Whitaker's sign shop. I just drove by their house the other evening. It's shining brightly for all to see. We’ve remodeled the “Rubber Room.” It had surely seen it’s better days of teenagers running their finger nails down the blue foam rubber when we locked them up for a spell, and me banging my head on the one of the four walls crying frantically while searching for answers to one of our teenaged dilemmas.
All in all, it wasn’t near as bad as it could have been. We could probably consider ourselves fortunate. We’ve survived several car accidents, (one a mere ten-thousand dollars worth,) a few traffic tickets, and accompanying our youngest to his court hearing for fleeing the scene of an accident. Attitudes at present are on the down swing. Our oldest son is getting married in September, and our daughter a year from this June. I don't know what in the world I was thinking? I should have known the rubber room would never become obsolete. Let's see...where's the number for the contractor that designed that room? I know I have it here some where. Who ever complains about repeat business?
© 2009 Carole
Shelved in 1 LibraryAdded on February 5, 2008
Last Updated on January 1, 2009
Rio Rancho, NM
AboutThere comes a point in your life when you realize: Who matters, Who never did, Who won't anymore... And who always will. So, don't worry about people from your past, there's a reason why they didn.. more..
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