Lessons Learned from Seventeen Years of Parenting

Tesla turns seventeen today. It’s also a little frightening to look at the premature baby he was, the six-foot-plus’er he is now, and to think so many years have passed between them.

Especially since I haven’t aged a day. (This is my blog. I’ll entertain my fantasies if I want to.)

I’ve learned a few things from the experience. In honor of Tesla’s birthday, I’m sharing some of them with you. (Because what are children’s birthdays for if not to embarrass them?)

Parenting a male child has taught me:

1. Toddlers are genetically related to transformers; they can turn any object into a gun, a car, or a tank at a moment’s notice.

2. Cookies can be shared from mother to child. Lima beans only share in the other direction.

3.  Those four-legged monsters dotting the hillsides in rural California? Feral cows.

5. Toddlers are miniature Yodas, making public statements of socially-awkward truth. (Mom? Why does that woman smell like the cat box?)

6. There is no better more brutally honest editor than a seventeen year-old male who knows your genre.

7. Talking about your son’s hobbies on your blog earns you referral traffic from Google searches like “DIY Fission Reactor,” “knife gun enthusiast,” and “ninja author.” (OK, the last one might be my own fault, but I’m including it because it’s full of win.)

8. Statistically, only 5% of readers noticed this list is mis-numbered. Statistical probability of Tesla spotting my error? 100%.

9. If you let your teenage son watch Hitchcock’s Psycho, be prepared for him to respond to the next inquiry about whether being homeschooled makes him lonely by saying, “A boy’s best friend is his mother.”

(Corollary: He will say this absolutely straight-faced, leaving everyone else to wonder whether he’s seen the film or just legitimately crazy.)

Happy Birthday, Tesla. If you take up taxidermy, you’re moving out.

5 thoughts on “Lessons Learned from Seventeen Years of Parenting

  • June 22, 2012 at 5:12 pm

    Happy birthday, Tesla! Kids never stop amazing us, even when they’re snarky, wonderful teens. Enjoy tonight!

  • June 25, 2012 at 10:48 pm

    LOL. Happy birthday, Tesla.

    10. That old saying ‘eat you out of house and home’ is not just an old saying.

    Thanks for the smiles, Susan. 🙂

    • June 26, 2012 at 10:50 am

      So true Piper! Teenage males eat as much as 2-3 normal adults put together!

      Thanks for the birthday wishes!!

  • June 26, 2012 at 10:23 am

    Happy Birthday to a snarky, brilliant, funny and wonderful fellow. It should be interesting to see what you make of the world in the years to come!

    • June 26, 2012 at 10:51 am

      Big thanks from Tesla and from me, Wynd – we miss you guys and hope you’re all doing well! I’ll be down your way next June for a conference, so we have to get together!!

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