Welcome To Hell...

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Something scary is happening to my daughter, Fric. At ten years old, she is rapidly becoming as cuddly as a porcupine. When her brother sees her, he now turns on one foot and high tails it in the opposite direction. Just the other day I found him hiding in my closet. I asked him what he was doing there as I secretly worried he was eyeing my shoes and fingering my dresses. Thankfully, he wasn't. No, instead he was hiding from his sister and her mood.

The puberty induced mood. It has to be it. I can't think of anything else that would take my sweet beautiful Fric and turn her into the green-pea spewing, head swivelling demon she has become. I'm slightly afraid of her. And I think she knows it.

I was young when I discovered I was pregnant with her. 20 years old, and living with my best friend. Her father and I, had discovered the joys of sex. With each other. (As opposed to the solo variety he liked to participate in frequently.) She wasn't planned but she wasn't unwanted. Well, that's not true. For about an hour after I found out I was pregnant, you could find me out in my apartment's very brightly lit white corridor, sitting on the floor, smoking a pack of ciggies (and I don't smoke people) freaking out wondering if I was grown up enough to be a mother.

Then her father came, held me in his arms, took away my freshly purchased cigarettes and told me I would rock this parenting gig. Fool that I was, I believed him. Boo and I didn't rush into anything, we just continued as normal as I swelled with gestational love. He stayed out on the farm and I stayed in my city apartment. We bought baby paraphernalia and went on dates. We argued over baby names on the telephone. I insisted she was a girl, he insisted she had a penis.

Side note: He has since learned not to argue with me. I am ALWAYS right.

And when she finally arrived, he ran over a porcupine in his haste to see his daughter safely enter this world. Ah, the sacrifice a father will make for his child. When we held her in our arms for the first time, we knew we'd be fine. We were a family, the three of us. She was a gift to her daddy and I, and we make sure to often tell her this.

Sure she wasn't easy. She refused my boobs. She had colic. And she could power shit like no other. She refused to grow hair, she wouldn't speak until almost three and she had a love of coloring on walls that I still haven't managed to cure her of. But she has a smile that lights up the room and a capacity for love that makes me feel extraordinary. Like most new moms, I was completely, utterly mesmerized by her and my powerful love for her.

Now, as she snarls at her brother, and rolls her eyeballs at me, it is all I can do from sneaking into the pantry and breaking open the mommy juice. Where the hell did my sweet ray of sunshine get off to? I am completely unprepared for the demon who is my daughter these days.

Is this the first step of puberty? What's next? The sproutage of boobage and body hair? A love of black eyeliner and a fondness for black clothing? Will she take down her doll collection and replace it with pictures of boys? Will she finally stop listening to Shania and Britney and start listening to the Clash or the Cure? I would pay her large sums of money to speed up that process. Will she suddenly insist on privacy in the bathroom as she wraps toilet paper around her hand 45 times to stop up the toilet?

How long does this stage last? When will it end? Will she ever stop rolling her damn eyeballs at me? I'm getting sick of seeing the whites of her eyes. I'm completely unprepared for this stage of parenting. I don't know how to be the cool mom to a pubescent tween. I'm stuck in the past, I suppose. I'm still rocking the soccer mom thing, and being the rock star at the Christmas concerts. I can't morph into the terribly uncool, unknowing mom who doesn't get tweeny-boppers.

I refuse to become that mom who tries so hard to fit in with her kids that she makes a complete ass of herself and has all the other moms pointing and laughing behind her back, while her daughter proclaims how much she hates her geeky mother to all of her pot-smoking, soon-to-be-knocked-up teeny bopper friends.

This was so much easier when you could just shove a plug in their mouth and bounce them into sleep.

I suppose I should come out of my pantry and start trying to morph into a puberty-understanding mother. Let go of the past and embrace the future. Perhaps if I buy her matching mother-daughter outfits and sync up our iPods, she'll stop spinning her head around and welcome me back into her world?

What do you think?