Less Needed Doesn’t Mean Needed Less

It’s one am and I have three teenage girls sitting in my living room eating bowls of chocolate cereal and drinking hot chocolate while watching some horror movie.  (I can tell by the random screams)  

Sleepovers sure have changed over the years.  Where they used to be some dinner, some crafts and a fort.  They are now makeup, boytalk, horror movies, and rummaging through my kitchen cabinets for anything and everything to eat.  Seriously, why is that a thing?  Haha.

I’m definitely less needed now, although occasionally I’ll be summoned to verify a funny story from when my daughter was little, or in the case of tonight, to confirm, and then tell in detail, of my daughters night terrors from when she was two.

I wonder sometimes how I will deal with the “less and less needed” as she gets older.  I feel like I grapple with balancing it now.  Because now, when she needs me, she doesn’t tell me.  So, I have to be paying really close attention.  If I’m not, I miss it.  And I miss an opportunity.  I can’t have too many of those under my belt before she feels like I’m not present.  And honestly, lately, I’m pretty sure I’ve missed quite a few.

I did catch one a few weeks ago though.  It was her birthday.  She had invited a friend to stay, and her two cousins had stayed over from her party.  I was in my room writing, and she came down and sat on my bed playing roblox on her brand new laptop.  I asked her what she was doing and she said she just needed to get away for a little bit.

I could have quit there.  And I did for a moment.  And maybe another time I would have just continued to write.  But I felt something off.  So I got up and asked her what was really going on.  She vehemently said nothing.  Still though.  I knew she was not being truthful.  I told her that she needed to go upstairs to be with her company.  And there it was…..

“I really didn’t want my cousins to stay tonight.  I wanted it to just be me and my friend.  And now they’re here and it’s just not the same.”

I immediately came up with a solution.  I told her to go upstairs and I would come up about 10 minutes later and grab her cousins telling them I needed something and she wouldn’t see them again.

“That won’t work mom.  They’ll just come back in.”

Um.  No they won’t, girlfriend.  I went up just as I said, brought the cousins down.  Threw a bowl of takis and some water in front of them and shot it to them straight.  “Look, she needs some alone time with her friend tonight.  Y’all are in the guest room.  Got it?”

They were TOTALLY fine with it.  Haha.  

My daughter got her night with her friend, the cousins had a fun night together and I didn’t miss an opportunity.

But I miss a lot of them.

And I am trying to get better.

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