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My dear, dear daughter 'Mom'ory

My dear, dear daughter,

In light of our argument this morning, I concede. I was wrong and you were right.

I don't know how you feel.
I don't know what you are going through.
I don't understand.

You see, it's been a long time since I've been your age, though it seems like only yesterday, and not over a dozen years ago, that we welcomed you into the world. When I was younger, I didn't have your concerns, your pressures, your influences. I guess I was lucky. The only thing I got in trouble for was staying too long on my friend's tire swing and not making it home in time for dinner. Times have changed; I get it, and kids your age don't play anymore. You should, though. You should all play. And laugh. And run (and not only on the soccer field). Maybe you'd all be a little happier and a little less angry. Maybe looking at the screen on your phones and other devices is what is giving your generation its distractions and the chips on your shoulders.

I think it's time to get back to basics. So, please give out your home telephone number to the friends I have not yet met and remind those who have it, that they can call; until 9pm, that is. I would love to hear a conversation in this house. It would remind me of the good ol' days of twirling the cord between my fingers when I got my turn on the phone. I know you will doubt it, but you just don't get that special connection when you text. You don't understand that it is an honor when someone gives their free time to a conversation with you. I want you to experience that.

I also want you to say things that you'd write, and vice versa. Cyberspace is vast, my love, and can come back twenty years from now to pay you a visit, if you are not careful. Besides, how much fun can texting be if you can't hear a boy's voice or the silly giggle of your best friend?

As a family, we talk every day, even if too brief. Please know that we will continue to do so, whether you hate me that day or not. I will not walk on eggshells with you, even though I sometimes feel like I am peeling back layers of an onion. As with an onion, I proceed slowly and sometimes cry in the process.

My job, as your parent, is to protect you, nurture you, and be strong for you. It is okay for you to cry to me and to show me your weaknesses. I will always be your rock. If you can't do that with me then I have failed you, my love.

In regards to your friends that have parents that let them do anything...I am sorry that they don't know boundaries. Please invite them to dinner one day. I'd love to have them.

When you left today, my heart broke, though I am glad you still said goodbye. My heart broke because I feel as if I am losing you. My heart broke because I know I must lose you in order for you to grow, and fly, and come back to me one day.

My dear, dear daughter...

I know you don't know how I feel.
I know you don't know what I am going through.
I know you don't understand.
I do hope you know, however, how much I love you. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Bernadette S January 14, 2014 at 11:15 PM
Oh my goodness, Debbie. What a cord you had struck here. THank you for sharing your beautiful writing with us all.
Ben Vitale January 15, 2014 at 12:27 PM
Debbie: I agree with your daughter with regard to her viewpoint of “social networking” verses “the telephone.” I am an administrator in a Facebook group that is called "Sachem Alumni 1959 1965," which consists of many members of the Sachem High School graduating classes of 1959 through 1965+. Many of our 124 members are around 70 years old, and we absolutely love to communicate on Facebook. In our case, Facebook opened a door to communicate with fellow alumni that we always "walked past," in the hallways of Sachem High School. I believe that talking on the Phone, texting, and Facebook are three different ways of doing the same thing. I have discovered that you do not need an essay to define a person; just a few words interjected into a "texting or Facebook conversation, do indeed provide more than enough information to define a person. To Debbie's daughter: I am a fellow Patch Blogger, and have certainly read enough of your mother's writing to understand what your mother is made of... Gold! Other young ladies such as yourself, are not as fortunate as you are; they are stuck with Moms, from the other side of the spectrum. I do agree with your mother, about putting too much information about yourself on the internet! "Among other things," I have worked in the field of Information technology. I can tell you for sure that what you post to the Internet, is by no means private. Please see my blog post. http://sachem.patch.com/groups/ben-vitales-blog/p/bp--is-facebook-your-resume-2 I am convinced that time travels much faster than the speed of light!
heather martin January 19, 2014 at 12:16 PM
Deb- wow! This is so beautiful and heartfelt ...made me cry. I share in your sentiments, but you are such a great writer that it certainly made an impression!

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