If my calculations are correct, it will be anywhere from 3 months to 6.25 years before at least one of my kids realizes just how cool I actually am. That approximates the window of time between which my oldest child and youngest child graduate from high school. I’ve based this estimation on the scientific evidence I observed in how the perception I had of MY parents changed upon embarking for a post secondary education. I figure, despite how complex and wildly unpredictable the teenage brain is, there are certain consistencies to the human experience that are reliable in determining when your kids become aware of your true swagger.
SIDEBAR: If my kids were ever to read this, which is highly unlikely, (but we’ll never know for sure because they’d never admit to doing so in a million years), they’d cringe while yelling, “Stop saying words like ‘swagger’! You’re NOT cool and never will be!”. I base this estimation on the scientific evidence of what they’ve actually said to my face.
I believe it’s common in the transition to adulthood that we have a moment of enlightenment when it finally occurs to us just how lucky we are to have our parents, (or unlucky, as the case may unfortunately be). In the first few weeks of attending university away from home, it really struck me just how fantastic my parents were (and are). Notice I didn’t say how cool they were (and are). Not that I don’t love them and hold them in very high regard. But, they’re just not cool; you know, like me.
While they don’t realize it as of yet, my kids are lucky this way, because I AM actually cool, unlike what other parents, including mine, think they are; which is just plain old fantastic parents who have a delusional impression of what’s in the realm of possibility for their kids to eventually think of them.
What allows me to keep my finger on the pulse of swaggerness with my kids is taking a deep dive into understanding what makes them tick. On this edition of Translating Teen To English, I take you inside the teenager’s brain with, “Wait For It”.