The funniest part of parenting (in my humble estimation) is when your child discovers something for the first time, and tells you about it, like you’ve never heard it before.
Case in point: The movie “Good Morning Vietnam” starring Robin Williams.
My son saw this movie awhile back, and thought parts of it were hysterical, calling me over to watch with him. The fact that I had seen the movie “back in the day” meant nothing.
I knew nothing (a parental fact I should have learned by now.)
The scene my son loved - and wanted to share – was when the Vietnamese boy was talking with Adrian Cronauer (Robin Williams character) and says, “You don’t trusting me!”
You don’t trusting me.
My son said it over and over. We laughed. It was a cute mother/son sharing moment, brought to me from an old movie.
Fast forward to last weekend.
My son – who doesn’t go out regularly – went out. To a party. He shared with me prior to going that he would spend the night at a friends house. I was a nervous wreck. And literally did not sleep longer than about 45 minutes in a row the entire night.
My head was swirling with thoughts of crazy partying and drinking beyond the boundaries one could handle.
What if my son drinks and passes out, vomits, and chokes. And dies? (I know – super-scary, unpleasant thoughts. And ones that every parent of a teenager must feel from time to time.)
(Side note: We have already had the discussion – way early on – if there is drinking, then there is absolutely, positively NO DRIVING. Not yourself, or with anyone who has been drinking. Period. End of discussion. Call me. I will pick you up. Anytime. Anyplace. No questions asked.)
When the sun finally arose, I was bleary-eyed, and could NOT take a full breath until my text, posted at 3:53am “R u ok?” was answered – at 8:28am “We r all good.”
We r all good.
Heavy, deep sigh.
My son came home from school on Monday and began telling me about two kids that were driving drunk and had a roll-over accident over the weekend. They were unharmed – thankfully.
I said, “Why would they drive? Why wouldn’t they call their parents?”
And the answer from my son literally made my heart sing.
He said, “Mom, they don’t trust their parents like I trust you.”
I tear up typing those words.
I joked, “You don’t trusting me.” We laughed.
Looks like maybe (perhaps?) I have done something right in the past 17 years.
I’ll take it.
(Note to parents of younger children: talk often and early to your children about drinking. Tell them you would prefer that they abstain from alcohol, BUT if they find themselves in a situation where either they drank or their driver drank to CALL YOU.
NO QUESTIONS ASKED.
I told my son – after the party – I would have picked him up and taken him to his friends house. He said, “Mom, that’s weird.” I said, “I don’t care how weird it is. I would rather take you and your friend somewhere drunk and alive then the alternative.”)
Written for and posted with Montana Parent Magazine.
Mother of three, Katie Walters is the author of An Authentic Life, a member of BlogHer.com and is proudly invited to share weekly within the pages of Montana Parent Magazine’s website.