By Valli Vida Gideons of My Battle Call
It’s true what you’ve heard: SON, YOU STINK. In almost every way (well, your inner-parts aside).
First, let’s just talk about your pits. They are rank. At least after a shower with soap they are… Nope. Still foul.
Don’t get me started on your football jersey. No.amount.of.detergent. Will ever. I mean ever. Remove the /sten(t)SH/ embedded in it. And the shoulder pads you wear under that??? Good God. Another level of Dis-gus-ting.
I have a hard time even mentioning this one. I hope y’all didn’t just eat, cuz, I’m going to GO there…
Let me remind you, this personal throne was NOT intended to “save” your creations.
Don’t get me wrong. I know you are a busy kid. But seriously!? Once in a while, as a gift to your mother for, say, bringing you into this world, could you please take the extra two seconds to use the hardware conveniently located six inches from your shoulder? It’s a stretch, I know. But I think if you really set your mind to it…I think you might be able to reach.
Your room. Holy shit bomb. There’s no sugar-coating it. No amount of dusting, vacuuming or cleaning can fix THAT. Because a stinky person inhabits it; therefore, the rank resides there. Even your clean sheets mysteriously smell like steak fajitas fewer than six hours after coming out of the dryer. Or less. It’s a damn mystery to me.
At least your school clothes are fresh and clean. But that can’t change the fact you re-use your PE clothes, damply stuffed and rolled in a bundle and tossed in the bottom of your gym bag, buried under rotten yogurt and stale popcorn, and who knows what else.
The thing leaving me scratching my head is when I look into your eyes. I don’t see anything that remotely resembles foul, dirty, disgusting. It’s like the pits, butt and mouth don’t match the beautiful being sitting across from me at the dinner table (minus the ketchup all over your face).
You see, Son, here’s the thing. Teenagers are weird. And you are one of them. Don’t worry. It’ll pass. But before it does, I want you to know…
During this time, irrational emotions will surface in your heart and plummet into your gut without warning. There will be acne and body odor and other physiological weirdness. There will be mild flirtations, booty shorts, and full-blown, geeked-out immaturity. There will be self-consciousness and questionable judgment. There will be more critical boundaries and more severe rules. And there will be tons of mistakes, blunders, and epic flub-ups.
But there will also be moments of exploration, wisdom, freedom, and the ability to discover the passions that make you uniquely you. At times you may feel older and also feel like a kid, you are kind of both and kind of not. And that’s ok.
So, for now, I will continue to fear there is no amount of toothpaste, deodorant, detergent or Lysol that can fix this. I guess I will just have to wait til you grow out of it—just like your dad did.
Because when Dad takes off his combat boots and removes the socks he’s been wearing for three days (in. a. row), he smells amazing.
This post was originally published on My Battle Call.
About the Author
I am a military bride, who writes about navigating raising kids with cochlear implants, military life, and other things from the heart.
I have a degree in journalism and wrote my first short story in second grade about a walking, talking sponge (Can you say, “I was robbed?!”)! This is my perfectly imperfect journey. Read more at My Battle Call.