Posted in Education, Family, Social Media, Teenagers

13 Reasons Why: Adults Need to Talk About it.

13 reasons why

I plan to write an exploratory blog a post on why parents and teachers should watch 13 Reasons Why and talk about it with their teenage viewers. Most kids are binging it and having their own conversations. I think adult input is beneficial. If you watched this series, please share your input as an adult viewer and why you think it can help generate a conversation about the issues depicted: suicide, bullying, underage drinking, rape, violence, dishonesty, neglectful parenting, bystander (blind-eye) teaching, premarital sex, homosexuality, depression, social media, and more.

If you aren’t aware, this is a Netflix series based on the book of the same title. The Protagonist, Hannah makes cassette tapes to be distributed to those who she felt influenced her suicide. There is a lot of hurt, pain, blame, and shame revealed. I do NOT agree with how Hannah handled/mishandled her issues, but I think it merits a mature conversation that could help other distressed adolescents.

SPOILER ALERT — When you comment, act as if all readers of the post have viewed the show. If you have not, you may want to refrain from reading comments until you finished the series.  I recommend watching the 30-minute documentary following it on Netflix: 13 Reasons Why: Beyond the Reasons.

Comments — I hope to generate a good, adult conversation. Anything you add can find it’s way in my next blog, unless you state otherwise.

Posted in Family, Forgiveness, Running

Forget and Forgive: Leaving Behind iPhone Chargers

imageThis is a little story about leaving behind phone chargers.  How many of you have done this?  I bet if I could magically retrieve every forgotten charger, I could stretch out the cords to lasso the moon.

Last weekend my husband, two teenage daughters and several family friends traveled to Hershey to watch our Meadville Boys’ Basketball Team compete in the state championship game.  Neither Harry nor I are big basketball fans, but we wanted our kids to get to experience this event with friends and support their team.  It was a quick, pricey trip, and even though Meadville lost, we had a great weekend away together.

Moments after our five hour drive back home, Cara realized that both she and her sister, Elena, left their chargers at our hotel. My husband’s charger broke, so among the four of us, we only had one to share, mine.  

Who can count how many times my kids and their friends leave chargers places?  I can’t really scold my girls though, since my husband and I both leave a trail of various other things behind us.  It’s very frustrating to be a forgetful family, but we’re all working on it. The biggest consequence is losing an item and having to waste time searching for it or paying to replace it, which my girls did and will continue to do.

Since Elena’s phone was at 23% battery power, and she was leaving the house soon, she recharged first.  Cara was at 9% and wanted it before her phone died.  An outrageous battle initiated by Cara over the coveted charger broke out, so I confiscated her phone.  

Cara is typically calm, especially over something as trivial as battery percentage, but she couldn’t control her mood.  After all, she is merely the full-time daughter of a part-time sunshine who is prone to heated temperaments.  I’m sure being up all night hanging with friends during our getaway was the cause of some of her irritability, so I’m certain she suffered what I call: SLEEPOVER-HANGOVER.  Crashing after too much fun is no excuse to mistreat our household though.  

After a busy, exhausting trip, running was not on my agenda, but that’s what I did shortly after unpacking all of our stuff.  I was angry over the petty sibling rivalry especially after treating them to a good time that was all about them.  Ungrateful, I thought, as I laced up a new pair of running shoes and ran six miles away from our bad moods.  

It was one of my fastest and strongest 10ks, and I chalk it up to my adrenal gland anger more than the new Asics.  Exercise is the best way to exorcise my own unquiet spirits.  Thank God I can recharge by plugging into an endorphin outlet (More about this in a future blog.)  

I raced back home and entered a serene scene.  My girls befriended each other again, our dog snored on Harry’s lap, and the drained phone rested on the counter along with the silly yet sincere notes from Cara.  The source of her apologetic inspiration came from this recent meltdown over a forgotten phone charger.  

“I’m sorry for being a butthead, fam.  I love you all.  I don’t even have an excuse today since it’s Saturday, and I am only a walrus on Tuesday, Friday, and sometimes Monday.  But on Saturdays, I am a jar of peanut butter, so this one was all my fault.  I made multiple mistakes, and I apologize for them.  I hope you can forgive me and like your gifts!    —Love Cara”

In our house, arguments and outbursts happen.  Thankfully, remorse and apologies do too. These notes and re-gifts (i.e. batteries, candle, and lotion from our kitchen junk drawer) were a funny, endearing way for our teen to end the quarrel and recharge our home with peace and forgiveness.