Dear Rylee: Looking ahead to your teenage years

by katherine on July 14, 2011

My Dear Miss Rylee,

I know you only recently turned 3, and that your teenage years seem so far off, but I’ve been thinking lately and I wanted to go over a few things about what you can and cannot expect when you hit those dreaded wonderful teen years. And while I’m at it, I’ll also throw in a few tips that’ll make the whole world a happier place.

I don’t even know where to start…

I guess since it’s Summer break and I’ve been running into this a lot lately (no pun intended) we’ll start here…

When you’re a teenager and you cross a street or parking lot or anywhere else you could potentially hold up traffic, DON’T BE AN ASSHOLE! You need to be considerate of other people my dear. That means I want you to run that sweet little behind across the road so that the car doesn’t have to stop just because you’ve got the “pedestrians have the right of way” mentality. And also? If you’re on a road with a sidewalk, for the love of all things holy, use.the.sidewalk.

I want you to be mindful of others. That means when you’re walking through the mall (or football game or where ever) with your little pack of girlfriends, don’t take up the entire walkway. People may want to go around you you know. And people also don’t want to hear about “how drunk you were at so-n-so’s party last week” or that those shorts that girl had on made her look like such a skank…or whatever mean term you crazy kids will use by that point.

I happen to think that last little bit also ties in with not being hateful or judgmental or rude.

Back to being mindful of others, and considerate for that matter, if you notice someone close-ish behind you as you are walking into a building, wait and hold the door for them. Then smile at them too. It’ll brighten their day. This rule also applies to any pregnant lady, mom with babies/toddlers, any older person and anyone with their hands full. Don’t question it, it’s just the right thing to do.

Never, ever underestimate the power of a solid handshake and eye contact. I know you might think it’s silly, but trust me on this one. Oh, and you’d be smart to mention that to any boy you plan on dating too.

Honey I am going to tell you right now, you are not going to get paid for good grades…ever. I don’t care if all of your friends get paid for every A they get. You need to try your hardest, that’s all your dad and I ask. If you don’t get straight A’s, that’s fine as long as you put forth your very best effort.
As long as you are busy in school with sports, or some other extra curricular activity like 4H or FFA or DECA or whatever you choose, your father and I will provide you with a vehicle to drive and pay for your gas and insurance. The minute you stop participating in sports or your chosen activity for whatever reason? You better plan on getting a job. Period.
Well, baby girl, I think that’s all I’ve got for now but don’t be surprised if I add to this list someday.
I want you to love your teenage years, but I also want you to be a well rounded kid that has some common courtesies that are no longer so common.
If you want me to teach you a proper handshake, just let me know.
I love you more than life itself,
Your Mama
Photo Credit
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Have anything to add to my list? Leave me a comment…I want to hear!

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Juli July 14, 2011 at 9:17 pm

You have a very good start – how about I send you a 16 year old girl and a 13 year old girl to come live with you for a a few months. You will be adding to that letter my dear – in fact it'll become a novel!!!!

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2 Sarah Flanagan July 15, 2011 at 12:19 am

Love this Katherine! One thing my mom did for me: on each birthday of mine, she wrote down what i was like, any big changes that year or fun family times, and parts of my personality she hopes I hang onto, and what I value. When I went to college, she packed the journal in my suitcase. I love it so! I still go back and read some of those years and remember that a lot of the things I learned at 3, 8, 12…really did help form my personality and idea of respect! Just thought I'd share. Keep up the great blog!

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3 Auntie Megan July 15, 2011 at 2:15 am

I agree with Juli!! There is one thing I think I would add and that would be to let her know that she can always come to you or dad for questions or concerns of any kind. That is what I have always told Maria and she has always come to me and trusted me. All her friends can see the trust in us and they can't believe that she has that with her mom! It's pretty cool… Your letter is awesome Katherine, very neat idea.

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4 Krista July 15, 2011 at 8:04 am

I loved this. Every single word.

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