I Need Lunch Money

That is how my teenagers tell me that they love me and still need me in their lives.  It isn’t easy for them to speak the truths of love, feelings, appreciation, validation, need in conventional ways.  My wife and I now know that if we push too hard, they just want more distance from us.  If we lay off, and step back, eventually they wander back into the room and ask us “what’s up?”.

As a matter of fact, sometimes they need my help.  I totally get, now, why my Dad is always happy to help me with dumb car stuff, or dumb house chores when he comes to visit.  It is fulfilling and heartwarming to do simple things with my nearly grown sons.  Check the oil, crawl around under the car reattaching that plastic thing that protects something, changing a tail light, driving in one of their cars to go get the pizza.  It’s ALL FUN!  I get to love them (not allowed to SAY anything about it at the time), and enjoy them being part of the world.

There is just no down side to that kind of interaction.  I’ll gladly pay for lunch.  All they had to do was ask.

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