Sunday, June 24, 2007

amphibians aka My Girl

I was reflecting earlier this week on the transformation of my daughter, LG, since last summer.

Two weeks ago, at mum's thanksgiving service, she very graciously coped with an afternoon of people saying "haven't you grown!" But its not primarily the physical growth, really. (though there is that too)

Only a little over a year ago I was blogging about the need to get her walking to (primary) school by herself - to begin that little experiment in separation (for her sake and for ours) before the Big Change of secondary school last September.

Looking back, i wrote about this quite a bit ( e.g. here and here.)

It was clearly a significant issue, which seems strange, in the light of the casual abandon with which I now bid her farewell in the mornings.... when i've bothered to get up at all, that is)

Its so hard to believe its only a year since i wrote those posts. Now, the final clinching incentive to get her out of the house in the mornings is to threaten to go with her, to follow her embarrassingly down the road. Even after 6 days away at school journey in May, her response to the information that we were planning to meet the coach at school was "what? both of you?!!??"

She wears a lot of black. She listens to heavy metal, and death metal, and battle metal and... lots of other sorts of metal i've never heard of. She wears too much black make-up and it looks good on her. She is hormonal and stroppy and swears and is full of information about the latest street-slang.
I've been trying to decide whether to say something about some of her jokes.

I decided not to. Let me just say that body parts are a particular feature of them.

With her permission (and with the request that I specifically note her copyright of the following) I share with you some pictures she produced last weekend whilst on retreat in her room, after a scrap with her father.






Of course, if her teachers a year or two ago had seen these, they might have been phoning social services.
No doubt her teachers now would just smile knowingly and say "ah yes, 12 year girls".

LG pointed out how much better it was that she should vent her fury by expressing herself thus artistically rather than trashing her room in a strop.



So much so teenager.

They do grow up so fast - like most cliches, its true. The transformation is extraordinary.

But like the little froglets, she is also on the cusp.

I've not seen much of the froglets lately and think they may have flown the nest hopped the pond. A few days ago I witnessed one hopping onto the edge of the pond and thence out into the wide wide garden. I wanted to follow it and see where it was going, and check that it was okay.
I think, actually, they are no longer froglets, but little tiny amphibian frogs.


In between - or mixed in with - the sulky teenagerishness, is lots of lovely childishness in my LG, and dependency and affection. There are times when she positively snarls at me that she doesn't like to be touched. Or tells me I'm a perv because i touched her. And at times, she is all over me with her heavy, sweaty beautiful teenager body.

One minute angst-filled adolescent - the next minute little poppet.



Last week I bought a new office/desk chair, which came in an unnecessarily large cardboard box.
I casually left the box in our lounge, wondering whether it might act as a trap of some sort.....

and within 5 minutes of LG coming home from school - voila!



caught! (but not tamed)

23 comments:

Trac said...

Doesn't everyone hide in boxes??

Oooh you do those dotty things too. You'll have to give me dot lessons over a pint!? :O)
x

lettuce said...

oh yes! be glad to. xxx

:o)

Mike M said...

I used to hide in a box then my daughter when through that phase in her life. But because I did so much hiding I not just keep a box handy everywhere I go (just in case I need to hide-on-the-fly)

Have a great week!!

tut-tut said...

Wait till she's almost 16, at which point they can learn to drive here! Things have gotten much less full of friction, though, and am glad doors now stay on their hinges . . .

james said...

ah, but she still has some pink on the nails....not lost to the blackness that is Norwegian Death Metal.
(A current classmate's favorite....and once, a while back, a neighbor's 3am favorite as well. It;s nearly as annoying as Evanescence, which is what the wall neighbor at the other end of my room listened to at 3am)

does "aBaDoNeD" boy have a case file in his hand, as well as a fishing knife and dice bowl? Is her artwork embracing the mundane life of the file clerk....and you won't stop her?

Ex-Shammickite said...

Oh my.... so that's what my mother went through!! Well, perhaps I wasn't quite that bad, I didn't wear any black make-up, I probably would have but it hadn't been invented then.... and anyway, is that a Dalek on the desk behind the girl-in-a-box?

lettuce said...

well you know what they say mike, you can run but....

good news about the hinges TT. Not a happy thought about the driving tho... (she wants a harley, and a tank/jeep)

Norwegian death metal - will have to search that out James. Yes, we hear a lot of Evanescence. Also Cradle of Filth, Muse, 9inch Nails, Saxon (hahahahaha).... i could go on. If theres pink on those nails its where the black has all been gnawed off. aBaNdOnEd GIRL (misled by the hat?) is begging for spare change i think. beats filing, even if she can't write/spell prperly.

It is indeed Shammie, one of a few. It moves and talks and Everything!

call me betty said...

What a cool pic! And it's great she let you post her artwork.
Lovely girl :o)

Akelamalu said...

Don't want to alarm you Lettie but it will probably get worse before it gets better! :0

As to the 'metal' - my D went through all that too, head to toe in black, even black nail varnish! He's grown out of it now, well he is 31!

Dumdad said...

My son's 13 but hasn't shown a liking for metal, trash or otherwise. It's not right - I was an avid Deep Purple, Black Sabbath and Led Zep fan at his age! Tragically, I still am.
I loved the cartoons; and the cool Dalek.

la bellina mammina said...

that's so sweet. My eldest will be 11 soon, and he's already exerting his independence!! Good luck!

Donna said...

Oh poor LG. I know her picture of her abandoned, begging for spare change is suposed to be heartbreaking but it just made me laugh. My teenager came home in such a bad mood because her feet have been wet since 8.30 this morning. The way she treated me you would have thought that I had pee'd on them! The wind and rain seems to be my fault. Her perilous bus journey especially. She asked me (angrily) 'How would you have felt if someone had phoned to tell you that I had been killed on the bus?'

Trac said...

Yee ha! :O)

Nick is working late tomorrow cos he was going to work late on Friday, but has managed to get his 'client' to believe that tomorrow would be better...

...just so I can come and get pissed with you on Friday!

So I shall be sure to get out of my box then!
x

Cream said...

Could be a box of Tracs...
or Trac in the box...Shadow boxing...Boxing clever...

Sorry, just run out of wine boxes...

Dizzy said...

Bless! and nearly 13, soon she is going to be in her 14th year....

Isn't she funny. I am glad that you can see the humour and not just get stressed with her.

How long to you think it will be before she is wearing black plastic hair extensions?

Shelly Lowenkopf said...

One of the many available consolations is the awareness that she is as bewildered by her behavior as you are. If this sense of bewilderment continues,she may well further develop some of the prodigious talents inherited directly from her mummy. This would be a lovely time to provide her with a camera and the assignment of recording her universe.

Steve said...

Teenagers are all about the drama, aren't they? There's really nothing subtle about them.

My cat loves boxes, too. :)

lettuce said...

yes betty, :o)

lamalu you're not saying we have another 18 years of this are you?????

dumdad i think you need to take that boys education in hand

thanks bella, and to you!

well i know i've been blaming you for the rain Donna. ;op

yay Trac! i'm sure LG would let you use hers for the evening.

wine box - Cream, what a good idea.

14, oh shut up Dizzy! (also about the hair extensions.....)

you're very nice Shelly. and the camera is an excellent idea

hahaha steve, you're so right. Even when they think they are being very very subtle...

Reya Mellicker said...

The drawings are beautiful, so powerful wow wow wow!!

I never hid in boxes, but I did used to crawl into the cupboard below the sink so I could talk on the phone with a bit of privacy. Years later a homeopath cured me of my claustrophobia.

Congrats to the froglets! So many rites of passage. It makes me dizzy.

Queenie said...

You brought back so many memories, my son was 25 last week, and oh how that time has flown. Bracers on teeth, the wearing of skirts (yes, he will hate me for sharing, but it only lasted a week). The 'do not enter' sign on his bedroom door the abuse when I did, I had to find the source of that smell!!!!!!
Sweet, sweet, memories!!!!!!
Thanks for sharing.

lettuce said...

Reya i love the image of you curled up below the sink. I just hope you weren't surrounded by the clutter and rubbish that lives under our sink. That could give anyone claustrophobia!

LG has some great warning signs on her bedroom door Queenie! do you have pics of the week of skirt-wearing?

james said...

thanks for the clarification.
my fave song is the Gothic Archies "The Tiny Goat" on the album, "The New Despair."
Very entertaining....
is this the angst stage? or will that develop.
i never went thru the 12yo girl stage so i can't correlate this prop....

Queenie said...

There is one he has, sat on his bed cuting a fur coat up to stick on his guitar (don't ask). I will ask him if he will bring it over for me, better not let him know I will be putting it on my blog.