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  • Writer's pictureTina

Mama Llama Mode

Welcome to Monday, dear reader. I hope you had a wonderful weekend, took some time to rest and recharge, and did something that makes you happy—my weekend centered around my bean. Who am I kidding? Every day is centered around my bean, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. This weekend was the junior high winter formal. This is my girl’s second formal dance in her public school experience. Of course, I think she looked stunning. Her dress was a silver laced blue with ruching and an off-the-shoulder neckline. It wasn’t too short or too tight, but it definitely looked more mature than last year’s green taffeta number. Getting ready for the dance was also a different experience than last year. Sigh.

While last year was a wonderful and exciting “girl day” filled with laughter and happy anticipation, this year was fraught with anxiety, self-consciousness, and tears. I was stressed out, and I wasn’t even going to the dance. The Bean was a bundle of nerves. She was worried about her make-up, her hair, her shoes, and how her “friends” would perceive her. What happened to my bright little sprite who did her own thing, was comfortable in her own skin, and would thumb her nose at nay-sayers?

That bright little sprite has been replaced with a self-conscious, anxiety-ridden young adult. At one point, she cried big alligator tears and told me she did not want to go to the dance. It left me feeling helpless and frustrated. I did not know what to do for her or how to make her feel better. I remember being her age, and it wasn’t fun. It was a time of insecurities, judgment from my peers, and not knowing who I was or where I fit in in the grand scheme of things. I wish I could help my girl jump past all this turmoil and make her realize that in just a few years, all this won’t matter.

After washing her face and reapplying her makeup, straightening her hair again, and making do with shoes that she hated, she was finally out the door and off to have pictures taken with her friends. Once she was with her friends, she calmed down, smiled, and had a good time. I breathed a huge sigh of relief. We then had to meet her “date” at the dance, where we stood out in the cold, taking pictures. Once she and her bestie, Raylee, were safely deposited inside the dance, The Bibbed Wonder and I went home to await the end of the dance.

In true, stereotypical junior high fashion, the dance was riddled with fun, laughter, and a good dose of junior high drama. A friend of Jordan’s date’s ex-girlfriend informed said date in front of my daughter that Jordan is a “downgrade” from his last girlfriend. Sigh. I struggled not to hunt down this mean-spirited drama queen to give her a good dress down for being rude and unkind (perhaps envisioning pulling her hair for good measure). However, I put aside my mama bear or, more accurately, mama llama instincts. You ask, what is the difference between a mama bear and a lama llama? Well, I feel I am not snarly all the time. In fact, I’m mostly pretty chill. However, rather than tear you apart, I’ll kick you in the throat and spit in your face if you mess with my most prized, beloved little bean. I could definitely see myself kicking this nasty little wretch in the throat and spitting at her. Don’t worry; I will not attack a 12-year-old girl physically. I have elaborate and darkly humorous fantasies of doing so. I’m pretty sure it’s a mom thing. Okay, maybe it’s a twisted and creative mom thing. It’s still a mom thing, I’m pretty sure.

After getting the rundown of the evening from “my girls,” we discussed that sometimes people are unkind because they are jealous or insecure, or sometimes just because they can be. The key is not to allow these individuals to have any power over you. Don’t allow them into your head, and don’t give their comments a second thought. In the end, this unkind, mean-spirited individual has not made Jordan look bad. Her behavior is a reflection of herself. She’s done nothing but makes herself look bad. I was proud that my bean did not rise to the bait and start an argument with this young lady…a term I use loosely. Instead, she gave her the blow-off and continued to have fun with her friends and her date. Instinctively, my girl knows it’s not her battle to fight. This will all work itself out. If it doesn’t, I’m honing my accuracy to hit said target right between the eyes with a heavy dollop of spittle…Sorry, I can’t help it.

All jokes aside, I wish there were some way to protect my girl from mean-spiritedness. I hate seeing her feel uncomfortable and self-conscious, and I hate seeing her cry. I know that learning to cope with these situations now will prepare her for future battles, battles that hold much more significance. I struggle with understanding why others do and say things to hurt people they don’t really even know. I struggle with why it is easier to tear someone down than build someone up. I struggle to not dress in all black, hide in the bushes, and throat-punch mean little girls. I’m kidding! I don’t understand why people feel it necessary to be unkind.

My prayer is that my bean never allows anyone to steal her sparkle. I pray she stays strong and remains true to herself, her values, and her moral compass. I pray she always takes the high road and walks away from all situations unscathed. I also hope she knows I always have her back…and I’m not above going into mama llama mode. She is my bean. I’d move mountains for her, lasso the moon, give her the stars, and go into lama mode to protect her.

On this lovely January day, stay safe, be smart, BE KIND, teach your children to be kind, and keep washing your hands.

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Jan 16, 2023

I never have & never will understand how & why people can be mean to each other! Why is it so difficult to just be kind?😩

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